Toowoomba Regional Council and the Jagera, Yuggera and Uragapul People, as the traditional owners of a part of Table Top bushland reserve, were signatories of this significant Agreement. The area covered by the Agreement is especially significant as the location of what is known as ‘The Battle of One Tree Hill’ – one of the last major battles between traditional owners and European settlers in 1843.
“The Agreement marks the beginning of a partnership between council and the traditional owners for this particular part of Toowoomba. The partnership will work together to protect and care for the reserve and to promote awareness and understanding of the culture and heritage of the traditional owners in the community,” Mayor Dianne Thorley said.
As part of the Agreement, council as Trustee of the reserve will consult the traditional owners about management of the reserve.
Council will promote the history, culture and heritage of the traditional owners of this part of the city with signage, website and other information sources. The Agreement will assist council to comply with any State and Federal Government legislative requirements on the preservation of cultural heritage.
The Agreement also provides for the establishment of a consultative committee representing council and the traditional owners. The committee will facilitate ongoing communication between the parties to achieve valuable outcomes for the community. The Agreement will help address issues of the traditional owners in the future.
Toowoomba Regional Council is pioneering a new approach to coordinating land related outcomes with other Indigenous social policy outcomes through local government. Local solutions which are locally developed, tailored and implemented to address mutual needs and aspirations of each local traditional owner group in each local community, is the philosophy behind this approach.
“The achievement of an Agreement with one of the traditional owner groups for our city is unprecedented in the history of Toowoomba. It’s probably also unprecedented in Australian history to have an Indigenous Land Use Agreement negotiated and finalised by a council and the traditional owners in a few short months. That’s the value of working together in a spirit of real cooperation and with mutual understanding and respect,” Cr Thorley said.
“I am very honoured and delighted to be a part of this historic event. The agreement to work with the traditional owners on important indigenous issues will greatly benefit the local community.”