The Hunter Region Botanic Gardens (HRBG) has a new people mover thanks to $17,000 in NSW Government funding.
Parliamentary Secretary for the Hunter Catherine Cusack joined Port Stephens Mayor Ryan Palmer in Heatherbrae on Monday to hand over the vehicle to volunteers ahead of the facility’s re-opening.
“This people mover will enable visitors with mobility issues to tour the many beautiful themed gardens, giving everyone the opportunity to appreciate the incredible variety of flora and local wildlife,” Ms Cusack said.
HRBG Chairman Ken Page welcomed the funding and said the new vehicle, built by local manufacturer Varley Group, would be a treasured asset of the gardens.
“The old vehicle struggled to make it back to base, so this new people mover will be a game changer for our gardens,” Mr Page said.
“Our research has shown that environmental education is vastly improved when visitors are able to experience the beauty and diversity of the gardens first-hand.”
NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian congratulated the Hunter Region Botanic Gardens and thanked the volunteers for their hard work in creating and maintaining the gardens over the past 35 years.
“At a time when social distancing is so important, a visit to the Hunter Region Botanic Gardens is a great way for everyone to get out into regional NSW and enjoy some of the most beautiful flora and fauna our state has to offer,” Ms Berejiklian said.
Mr Palmer welcomed the funding and said attracting visitors to the Hunter Region has never been more important than it is now.
“Thanks to the NSW Government, this new vehicle will allow more people to enjoy everything this beautiful part of Port Stephens has to offer,” he said.
The gardens are set to re-open in a few weeks’ time.
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