THE quest to make Tower Hill State Game Reserve a national park has won support from the iconic landmark’s indigenous custodians.
Worn Gundidj Aboriginal Cooperative, which runs cultural tours and the visitor centre at Tower Hill, has thrown its support behind the renaming.
The campaign to make Tower Hill a national park is being driven by the Friends of Tower Hill group.
Worn Gundidj tourism manager Terry O’Keefe said a petition created by the fiends group calling for the change has been popular with visitors to Tower Hill.
“We have the petition here in the visitor centre and most people when they become aware it, they are happy to sign it,” Mr O’Keefe said.
“From our perspective, we are tenants here of Parks Victoria so while it wouldn’t have to too big an effect on us either way, we still think the change would be a logical and sensible thing to do.
“The Friends of Tower Hill say a name change would help with funding and marketing opportunities so that would certainly be positive outcomes.”
Mr O’Keefe said public interest in Tower Hill remains high with visitor number continuing to increase.
He estimates 40 per cent of all visitors to Tower Hill are international.
One of the key parts of changing Tower Hill from a state game reserve to a national park would be the banning of hunting.
Currently, duck shooting takes place annually in Tower Hill.
Mr O’Keefe said taking duck shooting out of Tower Hill would be a popular decision.
“From our observations, the number of shooters at Tower Hill are very minimal,” he said.
“When people realise duck hunting is allowed in Tower Hill, most of them are amazed and believe it shouldn’t happen.”
Friends of Tower Hill coordinator, Daf Hester, said the petition, which the group has had in circulation since July, has attracted a lot of attention.
“It’s coming along nicely, we have gathered a lot of signatures both with our hard copies and online,” she said.
“The petition will be tabled in state parliament on September 15 so we want to keep getting as many names as we can.”
*Link to the online petition:
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