Thursday 24 October 2019
Deebing Springs, Deebing Heights, Qld.
Yuggera Ugarapul People and AVJennings Working Together to Preserve Cultural Heritage
Following extensive discussions over almost two-years, official representatives of the Yuggera Ugarapul People of Deebing signed a Cultural Heritage Management Plan with AVJennings, which sets out how significant cultural heritage will be protected at our Deebing Springs project.
As was reported by the Queensland Times yesterday, although we have a binding agreement to commence work on the site, which will provide much needed affordable residential housing, we recognise and respect the First Nations people are the traditional owners of the land and we have paused operations to allow time for calm discussion of the current issues.
It is a matter of fact that our Deebing Heights site does not include any part of the former Mission cemetery. We are not undertaking any work whatsoever on that sacred site or planning to do so in the future.
Both AVJennings and official representatives of the Yuggera Ugarapul People appointed archaeologists to develop and complete the Cultural Heritage Management Plan for Deebing Springs. These highly qualified experts worked together to ensure significant cultural artefacts at the site were identified and preserved.
We are deeply disappointed to be accused of being disrespectful to the Yuggera Ugarapul People, particularly when it is based on erroneous information.
AVJennings National Development Manager, Angus Johnson, said the Company has a strong track record of respecting the cultural heritage of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders.
“AVJennings has successfully co-operated with traditional owners at other locations in Queensland and other states, including other sites in the Ipswich area, and we have no reason to believe that will not be the case again,” Mr Johnson said.