NSW Land and Environment Court due to come to Gloucester for Rocky Hill Mine appeal

Gloucester Resources Limited chief operating officer (COO) Brian Clifford and member for the Upper Hunter, Michael Johnsen at the mine site. Photo supplied

Gloucester Resources Limited chief operating officer (COO) Brian Clifford and member for the Upper Hunter, Michael Johnsen at the mine site. Photo supplied

The Rocky Hill Mine Project appeal is due to be heard in the NSW Land and Environment Court in August, with plans for a visit to Gloucester tentatively booked.

The hearing has been listed for August 13–31 before Chief Justice Preston and Senior Commissioner Dixon, with a planned visit to town in the first week.

It’s hoped the court will travel to Gloucester on the Tuesday, with a mine site visit and time with residents scheduled for the remainder of the week.

These arrangements, however, are subject to confirmation at a case management conference before the court on August 3.  

Gloucester Resources Limited (GRL) chief operating officer, Brian Clifford gave an update about the appeal against Department of Planning and Environment’s (DPE) Planning Assessment Commission’s (PAC) decision to reject the mine application at the Advance Gloucester meeting on Wednesday, June 20.

Mr Clifford said GRL has plans for a community briefing on Monday, July 2.

“As part of the merit based appeal process, the Rocky Hill Project has been exhaustively reviewed and all additional reviews have reiterated that the Rocky Hill Project meets all of the non-discretionary criteria which apply to the project,” Mr Clifford said.

The Rocky Hill information centre at 33 Church Street, Gloucester will be open on July 2 from 10am – 2pm with a community presentation in the Roundabout Inn that evening from 6pm until 7pm.

“The ongoing support for the project has been great and we will continue working through the process in an effort to secure the much needed project approval for Gloucester,” Mr Clifford said.

Groundswell Gloucester, which is a respondent in the appeal, has been actively raising funds to help secure the money needed to defend the PAC’s decision.

“Fundraising efforts are going well as the Gloucester community has risen to the challenge of raising $35,000 towards the Environment Defenders Office (EDO) NSW court costs,” Groundswell chair Julie Lyford said. 

“This amount is a fraction of the real costs and communities like ours are deeply grateful for the support of the EDO lawyers and associates.”

As well as a donations tab on www.groundswellgloucester.com, there are several events planned including an upcoming trivia night at the Gloucester Citizen Centre on August 4 from 6.30pm.

The cost of entry is $10 with bookings to be made at Gloucester Health Foods for either tables or individuals. 

“If there are any questions the community would like to ask please contact us through the website or give one of our members a call,” Ms Lyford said.