Helipad DA Dismay As Neighbours Fear For Promised Land’s charm

Promised Land locals feel that helicopters will destroy the ambience of the valley (original)


PROMISED Land residents, at Gleniffer, are unhappy with a development proposal to install a helipad at an expensive retreat in the area.

The Hermes Estate advertises itself as a place that is ‘very much for those who understand high level service and wish to immerse themselves in a premium experience’.

A stay at Hermes is for the very wealthy, with ‘vacation guests’ being greeted with a bottle of Dom Perignon champagne and Haigh’s chocolates while ‘wellness guests’ receive fresh juice or herbal tea, and fresh fruit.

Hermes Estate promotes itself as an exclusive venue for one or two people at a time, with a butler and concierge available 24/7.

The estate’s website provides the details required for travelling to Coffs Harbour airport by private jet.

The development application for the helipad includes an assessment of possible helicopter noise, but only for Hermes Estate neighbours and does not appear to mention the rest of the flight path from Coffs Harbour airport, or from other airports.

The application also suggests that there would be less than seven landings in a week and as few as ‘only 4 – 12 movements per year’.

Neighbours, however, are not convinced.

One resident told News Of The Area that, “The entire aesthetics of the valley would be changed, from a peaceful place to relax to a commercial enterprise.

“We are all pretty friendly around here and I don’t know anyone who is in favour of it.”

Another resident agreed, saying, “The idea of helicopters in somewhere like the Promised Land is completely inappropriate and would destroy the amenity of the area.”

Because there have been more than thirty objections to the application, it will be decided by the Bellingen Shire Council rather than Council Officers.

The Hermes Estate owners appear to be optimistic about the approval of their development application because the website states ‘We can arrange a private helicopter to bring you to the Estate’.

However, if the DA is unsuccessful, guests will have to make do with the estate’s ‘discreet, late model Range Rover, with tinted windows’.


By Andrew VIVIAN

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