The original inhabitants of the Brunswick Valley were Aboriginal people from the Minjangbal and Durrungbil Tribes. The Minjangbal people lived in the New Brighton and Ocean Shores areas where seafood and an abundance of wildlife provided a constant food supply. The Durrungbil Tribe lived at Brunswick Heads.
Captain Rous named the Brunswick River in 1828 but it was not until later that the first recorded settlement of Brunswick Heads took place. Cedar logging commenced along the banks of the Brunswick River in 1849.
By the early 1850's Brunswick Heads had become an established sea port for transporting cedar to Sydney. Also, as the banks of the Brunswick River were lined with an abundance of timber species well suited to boat-building and repair, a large boat-building industry developed at Brunswick Heads.
With a vision to revive the marine industry of old, The North Coast College of Marine Studies would utilise the existing infrastructure of the marina and slipway, with plans to use the 'Old Fins' Restaurant Building as classrooms and shopfront in the future.
The Marine Industry Action Agenda commenced on 8 January 2006 with the launch of the report, New Horizons, to take the marine industry forward.
Action 7 from Marine Industry Action Agenda
Ensure that the views of the marine industry and other key stakeholders are properly taken into account in the establishment and management of aquatic reserves.
A point of difference between the marine industry and most other industries is its requirement for access to waterfront land. In Australia a significant proportion of waterfront land is leasehold rather than freehold.
The working maritime industry, unlike any other industry, is almost totally dependent on the Government for its tenure and hence its ability to conduct business.
Submission to the Discussion Paper by Boating Industry Association of NSW - February 2005
There are a number of implications of this, but possibly the most important is the difficulty it can pose in terms of investment in the productive capacity of the business. Not only might the business not have confidence that a lease might be renewed, and hence be reluctant to expand infrastructure, but financial institutions will also be wary of providing finance to projects where ongoing tenure is uncertain.
Why do governments / councils have a problem with freehold waterfront land? It is easy enough to control with zoning. What is the incentive to invest in a lease?
Submission to the Discussion Paper by Sadgrove's Quay Pty Ltd - January 2005
There could be significant benefits to the industry if governments were to convert existing leases to freehold, or at the very least, ensure that where leases are in place, that they are of sufficient duration to give businesses ans potential lenders or investors the confidence to undertake capital expenditure. This may be possible without compromising planning flexibility, as planning regimes should already provide adequte mechanisms (such as zoning powers) to meet objectives in this area.
Click here to read more of the Marine Industry Action Agenda
For further information contact Grant Wilson Manager, Aerospace and Marine Industries
Manufacturing, Engineering and Construction Division email@example.com
Fresh Eyes 2006 Brunswick Heads
In 2006, a group of students from the Faculty of Architecture Building and Planning from the University of Melbourne were invited by the Brunswick Heads community to be involved in exploring issues that impact on the future of the community and provide concepts about how best the community might intervene. The project was to look at these major issues around the region and town, and to start to define the major themes for its future form and character in terms of natural landscape setting and urban form.
When investigating the key assests and priorities of the village via a social, environmental and economic focus, the harbour and foreshore was indentified as the 'heart throb' of the community.
Brunswick Heads Harbour:
Develop the harbour which has social benefits. Utilising the harbour as the entry point to the village, reinforces Brunswick Heads historical association with fishing and the marine industry.
Marine College provides educational facility and youth opportunity.
Economic benefits would flow through enhancing an existing asset of the town, combining education with a new (revitalised) marine industry with tourism to balance out seasonal population variation.
A key focus was the boat harbour which was indentified as a key historical industry and an important part of the social identity of the village.
To support the economic growth and sustainability of the village, reinvigoration of the Boat Harbour was explored by Sarah Hobday North and Guo who both included the Marine College as one possiblity for the future at that site.