On 15 August 2018, the Cooks River Valley Association (CRVA) lodged a petition with Inner West Council that called for the establishment of a Pemulwuy Cooks River Trail.1
A letter, dated 2 November 2018, was issued by Council in response to CRVA’s petition. The letter noted that Council had engaged Tocomwall Aboriginal Consultancy “to undertake a critical investigation into the Gadigal and Wangal landscape” and that the “aim of this investigation is to build a wider and clearer understanding of the former landscape including the flora, the fauna, Aboriginal history, culture and heritage of the Inner West Local Government Area.”2
The letter stated that a decision to proceed with the proposal would be conditional on the following factors:
- The report by Tocomwall Aboriginal Consultancy that has been delayed until the end of November 2018. When “received and reviewed, the Council will use the report’s content to guide its future work”, and
- The establishment of a new Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Working Group.
The letter states that the “proposal put forward by the Association will be given full consideration as part of this overarching process” i.e (1) and (2) above, and that “Council will be in a better position to provide a fuller response on the proposal for a Pemulwuy Cooks River Trail once the Working Group is established, in early to mid 2019.”
So it appears that Council will await a formal response from the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Working Group to the proposal for a Pemulwuy Cooks River Trail before ultimately deciding on the matter in early to mid 2019.
It would be appropriate for the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Working Group to receive a presentation by CRVA on the proposal prior to the matter being formally considered by the Working Group’s members.