Successful land claims: King Edward Headland Reserve and Burwood Colliery Bowling Club

Aboriginal land claims have been granted for the 0.6 hectare King Edward Headland Reserve, adjoining King Edward Park in Newcastle and the site of the former Burwood Colliery Bowling Club. This means the land will be transferred freehold to Awabakal Local Aboriginal Land Council.

The claim for King Edward Headland Reserve was lodged on 25 October 2012 and the claim for Burwood Colliery Bowling club was lodged on 16 February 2017. Both claims were investigated by the Department of Industry—Lands & Water under the criteria within section 36 of the Aboriginal Land Rights Act 1983 (the Act).

Claimable Crown land

Under the Act the investigation determines whether the claimed land is 'claimable Crown land', as defined by the Act, when the claim was made.

The criteria under the Act which this particular land claim met included:

  • It was Crown land.
  • There were no appropriate tenures over the land at the date of claim.
  • There were no approved or pending Native Title determinations over the land at the date of claim.
  • The land was not lawfully used or occupied at the date of claim. (Lawful use or occupation means the land must have some actual use for its specified reserve purpose or some level of physical occupation. The investigation also noted that the Plan of Management had been declared invalid by the Land and Environment Court).
  • There was no evidence that the land was needed, or likely to be needed, as residential land.
  • There was no evidence that the land was needed for an essential public purpose. The proposed development of a private function centre was not considered a public purpose under the Act.

Further information

For more information, read the media release announcing the claim.