EXCLUSIVE: Rocky’s racist creek name will change today
AFTER years of hurt, the Darumbal people have welcomed news that Rockhampton’s racially offensive Black Gin Creek will be officially renamed today.
The creek will now be known as Dundula Creek – the traditional word for gum tree.
Darumbal Elder Aunty Sally Vea Vea said she was overjoyed by the outpouring of community support not just in Rockhampton but from all over the state.
“We are over the moon with this decision. It’s an important and uplifting decision for not only Darumbal women but for all Indigenous women,” Aunty Vea Vea said.
“After 156 years, this is a very significant moment for us and we thank everyone who supported us and stood with us in working to have the creek renamed — from state agencies to the average person walking on the street.”
She felt this marked a new season and new stage for her community, which was great for reconciliation.
“The people who drive over that creek every day will see Dundula Creek, they will see the change, and it will bring a good feeling to the entire community,” she said.
“There is healing in this action for the entire community and for all Darumbal women.”
The name change follows an extensive community consultation process in which Natural Resources Minister Dr Anthony Lynham said 99 per cent of public feedback supported renaming the 22km watercourse.
“For 156 years the old name – Black Gin Creek – has caused a lot of hurt for the local Aboriginal people and it is great to see it renamed with a traditional word chosen by the Darumbal people,” Dr Lynham said.
“The Darumbal people, who hold Native Title over the area, requested the change and it is clear that they have the community’s support in righting this wrong.
“From the nine-week public consultation, there were 723 community submissions with 99 per cent in support of the change.”
The creek connects four suburbs in Rockhampton, starting at the border of South Yaamba, running straight through Alton Downs down to Dalma and Nine Mile.
From today, any new Queensland maps referencing the creek will reflect the new name.
Dr Lynham said the department would also notify Google Maps.
Prepared for the eventuality of the name change, Rockhampton Regional Council was expected to change the name of Black Gin Creek Road to Dundula Creek Road, in line with the decision by the Queensland Government.
Name change requests can be lodged online at: www.qld.gov.au/environment/land/title/place-names/naming/suggestions