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Shooters Fishers and Farmers Party Media Release – Stop New England Rail Closures

Dec 6, 2017News

David Good, spokesperson for the Shooters Fishers and Farmers Party Northern Tablelands, is calling on National Party MP Adam Marshall to grow a backbone and actively oppose the closure of New England rail lines for a new rail trail, ahead of community consultation meetings in Tenterfield and Guyra next week.

The proposed rail trail will finish just past Armidale Railway Station and lead to the closure of the rail line between the following stations (full list is attached):

  • Dumaresq
  • Wallangarra
  • Sunnyside
  • Tenterfield
  • Bungulla
  • Bluff
  • Bluff River Loop
  • Sandy Flat
  • Bolivia
  • Gresley
  • Deepwater
  • Dundee
  • Yarraford
  • Glen Innes
  • Stonehenge
  • Glencoe
  • Ben Lomond
  • Llangothlin
  • Guyra
  • Black Mountain
  • Dundar
  • Exmouth

Mr Good argues that losing the railway for a rail trail is a step to losing the land altogether, and that instead if the funds were used to upgrade the line it could add to the Federal Government’s Inland Rail Link.

View the Shooters, Fishers and Farmers Party’s Media Release Below:

Nats Must Grow a Backbone and Stop New England Rail Closures 

Shooters Fishers and Farmers Party Northern Tablelands spokesman David Good called on National Party MP Adam Marshall to grow a backbone and actively oppose the closure of New England rail lines for a new rail trail.

 

Mr Good’s calls come ahead of community consultation meetings on the proposal scheduled to be held next week.

 

“When we have a Federal Government embarking on a new Inland Rail Link we don’t need rail lines closed, we need them kept open and upgraded,” Mr Good said.

 

“Adam Marshall holding true to form when National Party MPs come in conflict with Liberal Party policies – they just roll over and do whatever the city Liberal Party tells them to do.

 

“Rather than running dead on this issue, Mr Marshall needs to grow a backbone and fight for the community. What’s the use of the Nationals having a seat at the Cabinet table if it’s empty when it comes to key decisions affecting rural people?”

 

Mr Good suggested that if these lines were properly upgraded they could act as a back-up line for the Federal Government’s Inland Rail Link, or even allow the New England region rail access to it.

 

“My concern is that once this rail line is gone, it will be gone forever.

 

“With these rail trails the land will become Crown Land instead of a gazetted rail line, and with new changes to legislation the Government can easily pass on this land to the highest bidder.

 

“This is a risk not only for this current Liberal Party and National Party Government, but also if Labor returns to power.

 

“We need more rural infrastructure, not less. This is another failure by the National Party.”

 

Community consultation meetings will be held by the Department of Premier and Cabinet next week in Tenterfield (December 11) and Guyra (December 12). Full details can be found here: http://www.armidaleregional.nsw.gov.au/news/news-2017/rail-trail-community-consultation

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