Construction starts on new NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service office and depot Port Stephens Port Stephens by News Of The Area - Modern Media - June 7, 2023 Worimi elders, members of the Worimi Conservation Lands Board of Management and NPWS. Photo: NPWS. THE NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service (NPWS) and the Worimi Conservation Lands Board of Management have broken ground on a new NPWS office and depot in Anna Bay. NPWS Hunter Central Coast Director Kylie Yeend said a groundbreaking ceremony was held on Monday with Worimi elders, members of the Worimi Conservation Lands Board of Management and NPWS staff. Advertise with News of The Area today. It’s worth it for your business. Message us. Phone us – (02) 4981 8882. Email us – firstname.lastname@example.org “On Monday, Uncle Neville Lilley gave a Welcome to Country and a traditional smoking ceremony was led by Worimi Aboriginal Owners to cleanse the site and bless the new construction project,” said Ms Yeend. “We’re so excited to have broken ground on our new office which will bring up to 40 local Hunter Coast NPWS staff together on the same site for the first time. “We have more than 20 national parks and conservation areas across the Hunter Coast Area. “As our team has expanded to care for these areas, we’ve outgrown our current leased office space in Nelson Bay and works depot in Boat Harbour. “Having our team together on the same site will enable us to better protect and manage the precious environments that make the Hunter Coast region so special,” said Ms Yeend. Chair of the Board of Management for the Worimi Conservation Lands Jamie Tarrant highlighted the value of the jointly funded project. “The site of the new build is part of the Worimi Conservation Lands (WCL) which is an Aboriginal-owned park co-managed by the Worimi Conservation Lands Board and NPWS,” said Mr Tarrant. “The office will also provide a meeting place for the Worimi Conservation Lands Board and will allow for better communication and strengthen the co-management relationship between NPWS and the WCL Board,” said Mr Tarrant. While the new single-story office and two-story works depot at 4154 Nelson Bay Road will have a public reception area, it will not function as a visitor centre. As required under planning legislation, a review of environmental factors was completed to ensure the project is environmentally sustainable. An Aboriginal Heritage Impact Permit was also issued following extensive on-site investigations by Registered Aboriginal Parties. Construction is expected to be completed in early 2024, weather permitting. NPWS Director Kylie Yeend and Aunt Val Merrick breaking ground. Photo: NPWS. A traditional smoking ceremony was led by Worimi Aboriginal Owners to cleanse the site and bless the new construction project.