CONCERNS AIRED: Tina Mitchell, Amanda Roberson and Maree Haynes from Stanage Bay to meet with Defence Department representatives.
CONCERNS AIRED: Tina Mitchell, Amanda Roberson and Maree Haynes from Stanage Bay to meet with Defence Department representatives. contributed

EXPLAINED: What will become of Stanage Bay after expansion?

WHAT will become of the small town that will be surrounded by Shoalwater Bay Military Training Area when it is expanded?

That was what the members of the community at Stanage Bay were asking yesterday.

A group of five residents - Tina Mitchell, Amanda Roberson, Maree Haynes, Fred Elliott and Brian Barram - attended a meeting with the Department of Defence to find answers to their concerns.

Maree Haynes, who owns the Plumtree Store, said residents didn't know if the town would be a part of the land acquisition; if Stanage Bay Rd would be closed; and what would happen if there was an exercise and Stanage Bay residents wanted to drive into Rockhampton.

She said the meeting went very well.

"It was a lot better of an outcome than what we thought we would get," Mrs Haynes said.

"They are planning on coming back and talking to us in February (in Stanage Bay)."

She said the department representatives were not aware of some of the impacts the town would have as a result of the expansion, but had taken on board what the residents told them.

Mrs Haynes said Stanage Bay Rd would not be closed and it was possible it might be improved as a result of the expansion which would be good for tourism.

She said the representatives explained that any time an exercise crossed the road, the military would man it and make sure military personnel stop for Stanage Bay residents.

Mrs Haynes said because of the unknown with the expansion, many locals who had placed their homes on the property market had recently had sales fall over.

"It's been like wildfire out here the last couple of days," she said.

Mrs Haynes hoped this impact would die now that it has been made clear the Defence Department is not interested in buying Stanage Bay and would not isolate the town.

Landowner and leaseholders in the proposed expansion area wishing to book an appointment should check http://www.defence.gov.au/Initiatives/SingaporeTraining/ for details, or contact singapore.training@defence.gov.au.



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