As part of a regional Aboriginal cultural revival movement, Lake Macquarie City Art Gallery and the Lake Macquarie City Library work with the Aboriginal community to design and create a possum skin cloak along the lines of the “Hunter River Cloak” that was collected from Threlkeld and Biraban by Horatio Hale from the US Exploration Expedition over seventy years ago. (Fernando, 2011).


Reinvigoration of possum skin cloak making at St Clair. The first cloak made in Singleton in 100 years.

Bronwyn Chambers facilitates workshops : The Cultural and Community Centre Consultation Workshops are held across the Central Coast, facilitated by Key Insights consultant Stuart Davis-Meehan. They give the Darkinjung LALC members, Aboriginal organisations, Government and non-Government agencies the opportunity to have their say and input into the planning for the Cultural and Community Centre.

The Bushells Ridge and Blue Haven projects make progress.

Development Application (DA) for Blue Haven goes to Wyong Shire Council for approval on the 23 March 2011 for the 108 lot residential development and one easement which members need to approve a Land Dealing under the NSW Aboriginal Land Rights Act.

Darkinjung LALC, Bungree Aboriginal Association, Youth Connections and Wollotuka Institute participate in Indigenous Games Training. Gerald Bradshaw from the Department of Sport and Recreation facilitate the training. The participants learn a number of games including Gorri and Kool-chee Kool-chee, they are taught the rules, background and different variations to each game.


Uncle Bob Williams is an active member of Mingaletta Corporation in Umina. He establishes a Didge Group. The boys train regularly and are invited to perform on the Central Coast and wider afield. This includes major events such as Anzac Day and Sydney parades. Uncle Bob also establishes a garden for kids at Mingaletta. (see video of Bob Williams)

The Central Coast’s Aboriginal Community. The NSW Aboriginal Land Council commissions the Centre for Aboriginal Economic Policy Research (CAEPR) at the Australian National University to inform its policy development. It indicates that 42,326 Aboriginal males and 44,051 Aboriginal females identify as Aboriginal within the Sydney/Newcastle Aboriginal Land Council Region. Just over 45% are aged 15 to 24 years and approximately 8% between 25 and 54 years are participating in education. (Darkinjung LALC)

King Tom’s Memorial Headstone is declared an official “Aboriginal Place”. It commemorates the life of King Tom of Dunmore, a well-known nineteenth century Aboriginal man. The engraved sandstone headstone is made and erected by local settlers as a mark of respect for King Tom shortly after his passing in 1875, honouring the memory of an Aboriginal Elder. The headstone is engraved “King Tom died December 1875” with the word “Sacred” inscribed on the back of the stone block.

"Waiting at the Gate" by Robyn Caughlan with Jason K Foster is published by Magabala Press. “Every day, I’d watch to see if Mum was coming to get me like she’d promised. I’d counted out the fourteen days, and then some, but still no cars. I stopped counting and began to wonder when Mum, if ever, was going to come for me. Waiting at the gate became a vigil”. Waiting at the Gate is a powerfully moving memoir from artist and renowned fashion designer, Robyn Caughlan. Robyn is of Darug and Darkinung ancestry.

Tiriki Onus is awarded the inaugural Harold Blair scholarship for Aboriginal opera singers. Blair is a close family friend to Tirirki. Blair worked with Tiriki’s grandfather, Bill Onus, in his souvenir business, Aboriginal Enterprises. Tiriki is thus a direct descendant of Martha Everingham (Hibbs) of Wollombi and later Sackville Reserve. (Da Capo Magazine, 2012, 6-7)


Uncle Paul Gordon, Patron and cultural adviser for Hands On Health Australia (HOH) initiatives in Indigenous Communities, in conjunction with HOH establishes an Aboriginal Health in Aboriginal Hands (AHAH) program in Wollombi, which is an ancient ceremonial and meeting ground for many Aboriginal communities. This program will blend traditional Indigenous approaches to healing with other therapies. (Hands on Health website).

Darkinjung Local Aboriginal Land Council is named Aboriginal Organisation of the Year at the 2013 Central Coast Aboriginal Community Awards Ceremony.

A number of Aboriginal people living in the Lake Macquarie region are descendants of William Bird (“Little Breeches”). This includes Gavi Duncan (see video)

Darkinjung Local Aboriginal Land Council, Sean Gordon says: “..we continue to protect local Aboriginal land interests by identifying and objecting to development applications which have the potential to threaten sites of Aboriginal cultural and heritage significance”. Darkinjung lodge a formal objection to the Calga Sand Quarry Southern Extension, after numerous site surveys reveal that the subject land and its surroundings contain culturally significant objects and places forming a larger Aboriginal culture landscape. The Darkinjung Local Aboriginal Land Council maximise their position as the largest land holder on the Central Coast. The most recent development, Menindee Ridge at Blue Haven is selling well after the release of Stage One A lot sales in December last year.” In November, Darkinjung is successful in gaining title of part of Kincumber Mountain through the NSW Land and Environment Court. An agreement is reached regarding the management and ownership of the site, with a covenant providing the state of New South Wales with enforcement powers and Gosford City Council with management power via a peppercorn lease of $1.00 per annum. Ownership of the land will sit with Darkinjung.

Meeting with Minister for Aboriginal Affairs. On Monday 4 February, representatives from a number of Local Aboriginal Land Councils meet with Mr Victor Dominello, Minister for Aboriginal Affairs, to discuss the Aboriginal Land Rights Act 1983. The meeting is hosted by Darkinjung Local Aboriginal Land Council at the University of Newcastle’s Ourimbah Campus.The meeting is hosted by Darkinjung Local Aboriginal Land Council at the University of Newcastle’s Ourimbah Campus.Representatives from Gandangara, Tharawal, Deerubbin, La Perouse, Metropolitan, Bahtabah, Biriban, Awabakal, Mindaribba and Worimi Local Aboriginal Land Councils were all in attendance to discuss the Act and its significance.

Darkinjung look to develop its land at Halekulani through the future establishment of a Manufactured Home Estate (MHE). The MHE comprises 251 dwelling sites, offering affordable and sustainable residences to the local community. Significantly, the project creates a number of employment and enterprise development opportunities and will deliver significant outcomes for the growth of the region. “Research into similar developments has demonstrated that in the current economic climate and with an ageing population, the market demands affordable housing and as the cost of establishing MHE is far less than a full residential estate, we are able to provide housing at a very competitive rate,” says Sean Gordon.

Production of NAISDA College end of year performance: Our Home- Ngalpan Mudth directed by Raymond de Blanco at Carriage Works Sydney. The choreographer is Sue Peacock and performers are: Storm Helmore, Kyaan Hughes, Jenni Large, Bernadett Lewis and Tyrone Robinson.

Ngurra Bu. Adam Drylie is a director of Ngurru Bu at Wollombi. As an artist, dancer and cultural teacher who has long worked in schools and correctional facilities, Adam runs camps for Aboriginal people who have been disconnected from their culture and runs commercial tours to raise money to support this objective. Adam is a Wiradjuri man born and raised on the Central Coast. (see video of Adam Drylie)

St Clair mission station sites are declared “Aboriginal Places”. The mission church school and corroboree ground are recognised for their cultural, spiritual, social and historic significance. Wonnarua Aboriginal Nations Corporation plans to give new life to St Clair by establishing a replica of the church as a memorial to the Stolen Generations and a cultural centre as a place of education and employment.

Community Care Northern Beaches releases annual report: CCNB provides services to 3000 clients. CCNB provides 33000 hours of case management. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people are included in this plan.

Itji-marru Aboriginal resource Centre at Morisset High School promotes Aboriginal Studies in the community. The Centre promotes Aboriginal education to its school and community for both Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal students and community members. Contact: 49705407 Kathleen Butler is the Chairperson for the local AECG.

In Maitland, the President of the AECG is Debby Elliott. Martha Kelly is the AECG President for Central Coast Muru Bulbi. In Cessnock the president is Sonia Sharpe. At Mankillikan AECG, the president is Des Barton. At Minimbah the president is Roselea Newburn. At Muloobinbah the president is Ken Weatherall. At Muswellbrook the president is Vincent Cooper. In Singleton the president is Deirdre Heitmeyer. At Youyoong, the president is Rachel Smith. At Wyong the president is Robyn Sutherland.

The Aboriginal Education Consultative Group (AECG) is a community based voluntary organisation that is the peak advisory group for Aboriginal education in NSW. Membership is open to parents, Aunties, uncles, community members, Aboriginal and Non-Aboriginal.

Eddie Pitt is employed as the Aboriginal Community Liaison Officer with the Department of Education and Communities in the New England region.

Ray Kelly Junior, Aboriginal Project Officer with Newcastle City Council, together with Aboriginal youth, is developing Aboriginal trail through Newcastle Museum. (Pers Comm: HOAS with Julie Baird, Newcastle Museum, 6 February 2014)

Newcastle Museum in conjunction with Lake Macquarie Art Gallery is developing an exhibition on Threlkeld and Biraban. (Pers Comm: HOAS with Julie Baird, Newcastle Museum, 6 February 2014)


The Stolen Generations are still searching for their families. They now number between 15,000 and 20,000 in NSW alone.

February 13. The Apology six years on. Mandurah Hunter Indigenous Business Chamber acknowledges and remembers The Apology: it is a day of remembering and paying our respects.

Bill Jonas is actively involved in Goori community matters in the Hunter Valley, particularly through the Goori Management Committee at Newcastle University and family links in the Cessnock and Karuah areas.

Mural Newcastle. Statement of Aboriginal regeneration and pride to Sydney’s north-west?

Community Contacts:

Darkinjung Local Aboriginal LandCouncil

168 Pacific Highway Watanobbi NSW 2259

P.O. BOX 401, WYONG NSW 2259

Phone: (02) 4351 2930(02) 4351 2930  Fax: (02) 4351 2946

Email: darkinjung@dlalc.org.au www.darkinjung.com.au

DLALC Office Staff:

CEO: Sean Gordon

Operations Manager: Suzanne Naden

Executive Assistant: Erica Smits

Finance Officer: Rebecca Richardson

Trainee Project Officer: Cara Lake

Project Officer - Land & Assets: Andrew Smeaton

Project Officer - Culture & Heritage: Sharon Hodgetts

Receptionist: Jodi Shannon


Bungree Aboriginal Association Inc Community Services

02 4397 770002 4397 7700

Central Coast Regional AECG



Daramulen Homecare 02 4320 411502 4320 4115

Eleanor Duncan Community Health Services 02 4351 104002 4351 1040 


Gibalee — University of Newcastle Education Services

02 4349 450002 4349 4500

Marawarpina Aboriginal Womens Group

02 4355 463702 4355 4637

Central Coast Aboriginal Mens Group

Bob Williams 0413 338 4400413 338 440 


NAISDA Dance College

02 4340 310002 4340 3100

Clr Roy Ah– See NSW ALC Syd/Newcastle Region

Commonwealth of Australia, "Legislative Assembly":

Juvenile Offender Legislation Reform.


Private Members' Statements:

The Glen Centre," (3 April 2008).


Donna Fernando, A Possum Skin Cloak by the Lake

(Lake Macquarie:

Lake Macquarie City Art Gallery, 2010).

CEO of the Wonnarua Aboriginal Corporation Laurie Perry works closely with the board to manage the land from St Clair Mission and the land at Reddonbury Reserve. A Wonnarua Cultural Park is planned as well as the rebuilding of the Mission buildings and church to use for the community and public. Laurie says” Native Title isn’t a piece of paper its what you know and how you connect to country.” He discusses how the NSW Land Rights Act created many problems for Aboriginal people. For example Gomeray people have put in a land claim for some of Wonnarua land.