Leigh Creek tourism potential shown as town embraces natural landscape and cultural heritage

Leigh Creek tourism potential shown as town embraces natural landscape and cultural heritage

Cultural connections among young country city citizens and Aboriginal elders have brought an outback path to existence in South Australia’s Flinders Ranges.

Signals telling walkers about the Indigenous tradition alongside the path have been set up, many thanks to a group energy.

A person of the people involved in the job was Tarquin Strangways, who not long ago graduated from Leigh Creek Place University, in which he made the new trail signs in Adnyamathanha and English as portion of his SACE standards.

Through the approach, he labored with Adnyamathanha elders, like Noel Wilton.

“I genuinely liked understanding additional via producing the signals about my language and tradition and I definitely adore sharing that with other folks,” Mr Strangways mentioned.

“I am incredibly happy that there are signals up that individuals can learn more about my region and my language.”

Two Indigenous men leaning against a fence talking.
Tarquin Strangways (still left) consulted with elders these kinds of as Noel Wilton to develop the trail signage.(Equipped: Rosalie Richards)

Old keep track of ‘could have been in England’

Grant funding was secured to install the indications at the new Akurra Path to Aroona Dam, which employed to supply drinking water to the former coal town of Leigh Creek.

Rosalie Richards, Adnyamathanha language coordinator at Leigh Creek Faculty and member of the Leigh Creek Community Development Affiliation, worked to safe a $10,000 grant from the Foundation for Rural & Regional Renewal.

A bench along the walking trail, with a tree and rocky hill in the background.
Many rest stops and picnic sites line the 10.5km trail.(Equipped: Tracy Neldner)

“We seriously preferred to have the Indigenous heritage of the town, neighborhood and place recognised and an critical way to do that was to include things like the Adnyamathanha names of places, crops and animals,” she explained.

“But also to accept that this is a actually essential web-site for the generation tale of the landscape.”

Adnyamathanha people notify a story about the large snake Akurra, who emerged from Arrunha Axe (the Aroona Dam) and carved the landscape of the ranges.

“When individuals stroll along the trail, they are basically pursuing the pathway of Akurra and so of course it just manufactured perception to contain the tale in the two Adnyamathanha and English,” Ms Richards reported.

“The old path was on the other facet of the dam and you could have been in England, there was no mention of the Indigenous lifestyle and stories tied to the land, no mention of the Muda [cultural story].

“It was genuinely unhappy that there was none of that, but then Heather experienced the strategy of employing the new keep track of.”

Heather Hage lived in Leigh Creek for 30 yrs, increasing her household there.

“We lived on the west of the city and it was beautiful to stroll round the again to Aroona Dam,” she claimed.

A group of people sitting or standing.
Heather Hage, Noel Wilton and Rosalie Richards at the opening of the trail.(Provided: Tracy Neldner)

“You stick to the scaled-down hills until eventually you go via the more substantial kinds to the again of the dam. It really is attractive.

“The Adnyamathanha elders walked with us to make positive all the things was great and it was not interfering with any cultural web pages, absolutely everyone was truly joyful with it.

“It does acquire a few of hours but there are seats so you do not have to hurry.”

Benefits of reconciliation

Leigh Creek has experienced a rough several decades immediately after the closure of coal mining operations in 2015 resulted in the town’s populace a lot more than halving.

A young Indigenous man wearing a black jacket, smiling.
Tarquin says he is satisfied website visitors to the path will learn about his state and heritage.(Supplied: Rosalie Richards)

Ms Richards claimed it intended physical exercise and local community connections through sport were no extended attainable.

“So it really is essential to have areas wherever everybody can do healthful actions,” she said.

“All people has been doing the job alongside one another on this … it really is a true local community collaboration.

“We see it as a serious venture of reconciliation, recognition and remarkable advantage for us and also individuals coming in to master about our superb scenery and country.”

Ms Hage produced the the latest determination to depart Leigh Creek to be closer to her relatives, but stated she looked forward to returning.

“It was a really hard final decision to depart but I know I will be heading again there,” she stated.

“It is a terrific place for a few times off and anyone is locating that out now it appears to be.”