Cessnock City Council has announced that it has secured $1,950,000 under Round 4 of the Australian Government’s Building Better Regions Fund – Infrastructure Projects Stream to build an off-road, shared cycleway between Branxton and Greta, providing a co-contribution of $650,000 towards the project to bring the 3.3km cycleway to life.
The cycleway will connect the Branxton and Greta war memorials, acknowledging the sacrifice of local service personnel. The memorial trail is expected to be hugely popular with locals and also visitors to the region providing a new recreational offering.
Cessnock City Mayor, Councillor Bob Pynsent said the funding announcement is fantastic news and is a result of Council working with the community to attract financial support for the project.
“This project grew out of community advocacy and initiative. Council has supported the community’s vision through ensuring the project was shovel ready so that when funding became available, we were in a good position to make a strong application.”
“Working collaboratively has worked exceptionally well. Congratulations to all involved, including the Branxton-Greta Business Chamber and the local RSL sub-branches.”
Mayor Pynsent also thanked His Excellency General The Honourable David Hurley AC DSC (Ret’d) Governor of New South Wales for his support with a grant of Vice-Regal Patronage for the project. His Excellency support was secured by the Branxton Greta Business Chamber (BGBC).
President of the BGBC Brett Wild, who has advocated tirelessly for this project, said securing the support of His Excellency was a huge milestone in the life-span of the cycleway. Mr Wild welcomed the funding for what he has called a piece of legacy infrastructure.
“This completed memorial cycleway will educate generations to come about the sacrifice of local men who went to war. Some of these young men were seeking adventure but instead were faced with one of the most horrific wars. It honours their commitment, sacrifice and mateship and reflects our strong local military history.”
Further expansion of the cycleway to incorporate a war memorial aspect along the route is being co-ordinated by Branxton to Greta Memorial Cycleway Limited. The Building Better Regions Fund (BBRF) supports the Australian Government’s commitment to creating jobs, drive economic growth and build stronger regional communities into the future.