Media Releases

Media releases from the Office of Susan Templeman MP.

Enquiries from the media should be directed to the Media Adviser via the Electorate Office on (02) 4573 8222 or via email to [email protected]


July 02, 2020

A 20-year-old plan for a visitors’ centre at Bilpin that could create long-term jobs will only get off the ground if all three levels of government in the Hawkesbury take a bipartisan approach to support it, Federal Member for Macquarie, Susan Templeman, said.


The plan, submitted in the 1990s, would see a visitors’ centre built on land owned by the State Government, and Ms Templeman said Commonwealth bushfire recovery funding was available and could be used to help construct the centre.


“The Federal Government has provided $488 million for bushfire recovery projects, to be shared between fire-affected regions including the Hawkesbury and Blue Mountains,” Ms Templeman said.


“This plan has received the backing of many local tourist and business operators, and now is the perfect time to have another look at it, get input from the local community to see what role it could play, what type of tourist it could attract, and how it could support existing businesses without negatively impacting residents.


“In January I spoke to the Head of the National Bushfire Recovery Agency about this concept, along with Federal Ministers.


“I know Hawkesbury Mayor Barry Calvert is very supportive of exploring the proposal, and I have written to the Member for Hawkesbury asking her to come on board. It’s currently planned for State land, so the State Member has a big role to play.


“If we can get all three levels of government working closely together in a non-partisan way, this proposal has the best chance of getting off the ground.


“We also know Bells Line of Road is getting terribly congested at weekends, so any tourist development must involve Federal, State, Council and locals working together, to address all the issues involved.


“The first thing we need is a transparent process for people to genuinely have input. Development of the tourism industry in this area is already part of Hawkesbury City Council and the NSW Government’s plan, so I would love them to engage in a conversation about the issue.


“My view is that, done right, this proposal could provide both short and long-term job opportunities, support the local tourism industry, and showcase our unique World Heritage region, without negatively impacting on the qualities that make the regions so attractive to tourism.”