SACRED GROUND: This scar tree on the property is evidence of the land’s cultural significance to the Gubbi Gubbi.
SACRED GROUND: This scar tree on the property is evidence of the land’s cultural significance to the Gubbi Gubbi. Contributed

Gubbi Gubbi elder opposes $500m Noosa development

A "SCAR tree" located on land in the proposed Noosa on Weyba development site and historic accounts of an indigenous massacre contradict the application report's assertion there "were no Aboriginal objects, places or sites observed within the project area".

That's the claim by senior Gubbi Gubbi elder Dr Eve Fesl, who has lodged a development objection to the Sunshine Coast Council for the yet-to-be determined $500 million project that would see up to 1000 dwellings built.

Dr Fesl said the Gubbi Gubbi "knowledge holders" had not been contacted by the applicant and the project could not "proceed without the required consultation".

She said the Gubbi Gubbi disagreed with the cultural heritage assessment submitted to council, which found "that it is unlikely significant cultural heritage would impact on the development".

"There is a significant scar tree with toeholds standing on the property, either not located or not noted by the Everick Research team," she said.

Dr Fesl cited research which said scar trees were used to source materials for such things as shields, water containers and canoes.

"The fact of the presence of Gubbi Gubbi people well into modern European times gives rise to cultural heritage significance, along with the historic event at Murdering Creek," Dr Fesl said.

"When easily observable scar trees on the property are linked to other sites in the area, it is reasonable to assume significant cultural heritage exists.

"An event took place at (nearby) Murdering Creek, where innocent Gubbi Gubbi men, women and children were murdered."

She said the murders were part of Gubbi Gubbi oral history.

"The ground here is sacred to their memory, for they were drawn from their camp on the rise, in the centre of the development. The souls of our forebears should not be subject to invasion - just as the souls of those who die in defence of their country are honoured and protected."

Dr Fesl said once gone, this cultural heritage could not be replaced.

"Our sorrow and our loss will be deep," she said.

"Please do not let this development proceed."



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