$2 million for Newcastle Marine Rescue building

Media release | 11 November 2020

The NSW Government will provide $2 million toward construction of a new Marine Rescue building at Stockton under its COVID-19 stimulus program.

Parliamentary Secretary for the Hunter Catherine Cusack said the funding will allow Marine Rescue Newcastle’s plans for a permanent new base on the edge of the Hunter River to become a reality.

“This $2 million funding is fantastic news for Marine Rescue Newcastle and the future of maritime safety in the Newcastle region,” Ms Cusack said.

“$600,000 will be provided this financial year and $1.4 million next financial year.

“The funding will allow the local branch of Marine Rescue NSW to build a quality new permanent home on Crown land close to the water near South Stockton boat ramp.

“Marine Rescue Newcastle had been in limbo after being forced to relocate from its previous building on Shepherds Hill after it was badly storm damaged in 2015.

“Newcastle City Council provided a recent lifeline when it offered the Crown land it manages at South Stockton on a peppercorn lease for Marine Rescue Newcastle.”

Marine Rescue NSW Commissioner Stacey Tannos said he was thrilled by the stimulus funding that will help keep Newcastle's boating community safe.

“The NSW Government’s support will ensure our volunteers will have a modern, purpose-built base with state-of-the-art facilities for managing their emergency operations on the busy Hunter River, Newcastle Harbour and offshore waters,” Mr Tannos said.

“The new base will be fitted out with the latest generation marine radio equipment along with dedicated training facilities, offices, volunteer amenities, a crew ready room and berthing facilities for our new $535,000 rescue vessel right at the door.

“This will enable the unit’s crews to respond even more rapidly to save lives on the water both inside and outside Newcastle Harbour.”

Minister for Water, Property and Housing Melinda Pavey said the $2 million COVID-19 stimulus funding followed a statewide NSW Government announcement last year of $37.6 million to provide new and upgraded marine rescue facilities and boats.

“The COVID-19 stimulus program is working to enhance important community infrastructure across the state, including the Newcastle marine rescue centre, while supporting jobs and local economies in regional areas,” Minister Pavey said.

Artist impression of new marine rescue centre