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Hidden Gems of CQ Revealed

MEDIA STATEMENT FROM QUEENSLAND GOVERNMENT

When it comes to visiting Queensland’s world famous gemfields it’s not hard to get lost in the rugged natural beauty, but for many, getting lost en-route is a far less enjoyable experience.

Thankfully – once the COVID 19 fossicking bans are lifted – locals, tourists and visiting gem hunters will have a better chance of finding that elusive Queensland gem with clearly defined localities of Anakie Siding, Sapphire Central and Rubyvale and improved mapping to locate them.

Minister for Natural Resources Dr Anthony Lynham said the change would assist as a further drawcard post the COVID-19 pandemic and act as an economic boost to Central Queensland, once our gemfields re-open to fossickers and tourists.

“Once the coronavirus lockdown is over and fossicking is permitted, these changes will make it easier for tourists to visit and experience some of the world’s largest sapphire fields and popular fossicking hotspots in the gem towns of Anakie, Sapphire and Rubyvale,” Dr Lynham said.

“Previously as the area was under the generic name of ‘The Gemfields’ – GPS systems found it challenging guiding fossickers and tourists to our gem towns.

“With tens of thousands of gem hunters and tourists visiting every year the Queensland  government and locals understand the importance of tourism and the jobs that flow from it.

“That is why almost 1000 locals called for this clarification of localities and the confirmation of the place names change follows two months of community consultation.”

It comes as the Queensland Government has banned fossicking and camping in national parks, state forests and state-managed recreation and protected areas in response to the COVID-19 outbreak.

Dr Lynham said these changes would aid emergency services and postal services in the region.

“Community consultation is essential in any decision making process and I applaud members of the Central Queensland community who took this opportunity to help shape their community’s future.”

To view the newly created boundary changes, visit the State Government website www.qld.gov.au/environment/land/place-names/proposals-decisions/decisions.

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