ICONIC BRIDLE TRACK MOVES A STEP CLOSER TO REOPENING

Bathurst Regional Council has now compulsory acquired properties around Monaghans Bluff allowing for work to reopen the Bridle Track to proceed.

This will once again allow traffic to flow from Bathurst to Hill End and return.

For years the Bridle Track linking Bathurst and Hill End has been closed to traffic due to rock slides, which has made the road impassable at Monaghans Bluff.

Bathurst Regional Council has now acquired land from three property landowners to be able to divert traffic around the Bluff.

The compulsory acquisition comes after a year of consultation with solicitors over one of the lots after the owner of the land passed away without having a Will in place.

Council consulted with the solicitor dealing with the estate over a 12 month period, but was unable to achieve any agreement from those related to the estate. With this they sought the assistance of the State Government to be able to compulsory acquire the land.

The good news came today with the land now being handed over to the Bathurst Regional Council, allowing for works to commence.

Member for Bathurst Paul Toole said it has been a drawn out process as there were a number of significant steps that had to be followed to get this stage.

“The NSW Government has already committed $2 million for this iconic road to be reopened,” Mr Toole said.

“The funding was made available to Bathurst Regional Council in 2018 to go towards allowing vehicles to once again complete the 60 km journey between Bathurst and Hill End.

“The Bridle Track is a favourite with four-wheel-drive enthusiasts, campers and anglers and is an example of how heritage tourism can benefit the region.

“Reopening the Bridle Track brings with it significant economic benefits to the region, including the village of Hill End.

“The campgrounds along the route are a lure for locals and visitors alike and present a number of opportunities to bring outdoor enthusiasts to the area.”

Mr Toole said the Bridle Track’s history dates back in the early 1800s when it was a horse route for stockman, but become a very busy transport corridor when gold was discovered in the Turon Valley and was used by those wanting to strike it rich during the gold rush.