Newcastle council funds flow for Anzac Memorial Walk

NEWCASTLE council has pledged the $1.5 million needed to complete the Anzac Memorial Walk through to Bar Beach car park.

The idea split the council's vote at last week's meeting, with Liberals and independent Andrea Rufo voting in favour of the idea and The Greens and Labor voting against it.

Lord mayor Jeff McCloy used his casting vote to hand over the money, which was raised through Newcastle Airport.

Two of the walk's main backers, Newcastle architect Barney Collins and restaurateur Neil Slater, unveiled their design to the council two weeks ago.

The $5 million project features a 200-metre cliff-top bridge and oversized silhouettes of World War I soldiers.

BHP has committed $3 million to the project, and will construct the walk to trig point, off Wrightson Avenue.

Labor councillor Nuatali Nelmes said she supported the Anzac walk in principle but pointed out that the council was promised two years ago it was to be fully funded by the private sector.

She said the $1.5 million should be spent on the next shovel-ready project - Cooks Hill Surf Life Saving Club - which had been approved and would be partly funded by its own members.

Liberal councillor Lisa Tierney said the city needed to talk more about opportunity and the council should get behind the Anzac walk.

The development application for the memorial walk is likely to come before the council at the March 25 meeting.

BHP and the RSL want the walk built by 2015, when BHP celebrates 100 years of steelworks in Newcastle and the RSL marks 100 years since the Gallipoli landing.

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