SPECIAL POI: Hindmarsh Island Bridge

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Aboriginal culture

The building of the Hindmarsh Island Bridge was a controversial episode in South Australian politics.
The proponents for the bridge were developers of the Hindmarsh Island Marina and Housing development, Tom and Vicki Chapman who purchased land in 1977. As part of the development conditions they were required to replace the already over-stretched ferry with a bridge.
Aboriginal women from the Ngarrindjeri nation objected to the proposed bridge on the basis that it would interfere with "women's business"
In 1994 the Hon. Robert Tickner, the Federal Minister for Aboriginal Affairs put a 25 year injunction on the bridge to stop the construction.
The South Australian Government instituted a Royal Commission in 1995 to investigate if the claims of Aboriginal women to the significance of the area were true. Contorversially the Royal Commission found the claims were fabricated. The bridge was built (completed in 2001) replacing the ferry that had serviced the island since 1858.
In 2010 the SA Government conceded that the claims were genuine in a statement to Parliament.
The photo shows the bridge linking Hindmarsh Island with the town of Goolwa. In the foreground is the Goolwa wharf with the Paddle Steamer Oscar W tied up at berth.
Enhance your trails experience, for more information about South Australian trails including bike, walking, scuba and horse trails go the the SA Trails website: www.southaustraliantrails.com