Lhara Report of Activities 2020-21

Lower Hawkesbury Aquatic And Recreation Association Inc.
Annual General Meeting
Report of Activities 2020-21


LHARA’s first year 2019-20 started amidst bushfires in NSW, then followed by a series of lockdowns due to Covid -19.It’s somewhat remarkable that we achieved anything at all. The lockdowns if anything have become more extensive with the Delta variant so far in 2021 and have proved to be very disruptive. We have been fortunate to have a very committed committee whose members have persevered and adapted to Zoom meetings where we’re forced to cover a lot of material in a short time while dealing with all kinds of technical interruptions.


It is with no reservations that I take this opportunity to thank the committee and recognise their representation.


The establishment of the LHARA website will enable any interested parties or residents from Brooklyn or other river settlements to view the concept plan and receive updates on the project.

Hornsby Community and Cultural Facilities Strategic Plan

A number of submissions were made by our representative clubs to the Hornsby Community and Cultural Facilities Strategic Plan which produced a very positive outcome for LHARA where we gathered 28 written submissions that supported a multi-purpose community and recreation facility to be built at Parsley Bay.

Passive Craft rigging and launching facility

From April to June, the committee was focused on planning for a passive craft launch/ retrieval facility in Parsley Bay and during those discussions attention returned to the Passive Craft rigging and launching facility that was included in the original concept plans for the Parsley Bay Centre. Representatives from LHARA and Hornsby Shire Council met at the beach near the breakwater and discussed that area’s pros and cons and moved on to discuss the existing power boat launching ramp and finally the southwestern corner of Parsley Bay where we propose the passive craft facility. We also reviewed the grassy area between there and the toilet block as a rigging/ prep area for passive craft. Measuring up and getting levels etc. provided the groundwork for contractors to draw up plans and quote on the proposed facility. A further meeting was held with Council about the proposed launching facility and rigging area and additional proposal for adjacent pick-up/ drop-off parking.

Raising Government support

Also in August, letters were sent to State Member, Hon. Matt Kean MP and Federal Member, Hon.Julian Leeser MP updating LHARA’s progress and drawing attention to the HSC Community and Cultural Strategic Facilities Plan and that the proposal for a multi-purpose community centre project development for Parsley Bay was the preferred proposal having received 28 formal submissions. The Hon. Julian Leeser Federal member for Berowra, is supportive of the LHARA proposal and keen to help find funding once we’re at the Development Application Level LHARA plans to meet with Hon Matt Kean NSW member for Hornsby and gain further support among community groups.

Sydney Water

During the year there were some preliminary discussions with Sydney Water about the proposed location for the Centre. No further action is proposed a until such time as we can engage an approved engineer.

Action Plan

In May 2021 LHARA considered a draft Action Plan to better track and guide the committee’s activities. One of the actions was a proposed video presentation to Representative associations and a Presentation to Community. The first of the presentations was made in October to the Hawkesbury River Dragons. This was successful and we gained positive feedback. We will be making a presentation to the HKSC in November and plan to reach out to the Brooklyn & offshore communities at a later date.

Opposition to the proposed facility

I acknowledge that there has been some limited opposition to the proposed facility from some nearby residents. The LHARA committee is committed to clearly representing the intent to build a truly multi-purpose facility for the benefit of all and provide a facility that not only caters for aquatic recreation but also community activities and education, including appropriate meeting facilities for both young and old. We have planned video presentations to the community as mentioned above that will be forthcoming.

Hornsby Shire Council

In August a further meeting was held with Hornsby Shire Council around the plans for the passive craft launch/ retrieval facility. Council indicated we have a way to go due to council elections now to be held in December and the view that Council is keen to review parking facilities in the Brooklyn precinct in February. Council officers will also discuss the property use with Dept. Crown Lands regarding the proposed site for the facility. Council officers have been helpful in providing insight on the course of action we need to take.

An Indicative Usage Plan for the facility has been drafted and discussed at the October 6th meeting though not yet quite finalised. It will be an important reference providing information about the proposed time and type of use of the facility.

LHARA has been invited to apply for a Site Investigation Licence from Crown Lands to facilitate feasibility studies for the proposed works at Parsley Bay, an item for the agenda of the next committee meeting.

Cliff Sutton
Chairman LHARA
November 2021