Big carrier backs Wesley Vale yards site

Wesley Vale saleyards site backed by transporter, councils

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PERMANENT HOME: The hunt is on for a permanent home for a new saleyards in north-west Tasmania, after the success of the temporary facility at Smithton.

PERMANENT HOME: The hunt is on for a permanent home for a new saleyards in north-west Tasmania, after the success of the temporary facility at Smithton.

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Wesley Vale site's potential beyond just a saleyards site.

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A major livestock transporter and local councils have welcomed plans for a new agricultural hub and livestock saleyards in north-west Tasmania.

Hodge Transport has written to the Mill Park Rural Stock and Agricultural Grounds committee at Wesley Vale, expressing support for the concept.

"Hodge Transport, who operate 45 semitrailers in Tasmania, want to put in a secure trailer park, which will involves a truck wash and a stock marshalling area," Mill Park comittee chair Mr Badcock said.

'If that goes in, why wouldn't you put a saleyard in beside it?"

Hodge Transport owner Rob Hodge told the committee he supported the location and expressed enthusiasm for using space on the site.

Mr Badcock said until Quioba saleyards closed permanently last year, it was supported by farmers from throughout the north-west, the Meander and West Tamar council areas.

"Geographically, farmers in these local government areas could choose to go to Powranna, but instead chose Quoiba," the Mill Park committee's submission said.

The committee pointed out 30 per cent of sheep and cattle sold through Quoiba were from east of the Latrobe council area.

Latrobe Council has supported the submission for a proposed saleyards at the Wesley Vale site.

The council's general manager Gerald Monson said Latrobe also supported the committee's plans to submit the proposal as a Regional Election priority to the Cradle Coast Authority.

Devonport City mayor Annette Rockliff has also backed the proposal.

"The site has many advantages, including ease of access to the highway, close to port and airport, reasonably accessible to all areas of the north-west," Cr Rockliff told the committee.

It was not close to any residential developments, either now or into the future, which reduced the risk of unsatisfactory interactions.

The Devonport Chamber of Commerce has also told the committee it can see benefit, for its members.

Mr Badcock said great potential existed to enhance the site as a showpiece for the region's agricultural sector.

"It's not so much a saleyard, as a site with the potential for a multitude of activities," Mr Badcock said.

It's not so much a saleyard, as a site with the potential for a multitude of activities. - Mill Park Rural Stock and Agricultural Grounds committee chair Mike Badcock

"We are just coordinators trying to stimulate it, and ensure all these things happen in one place.

"A unique opportunity exists to create a space that becomes a showpiece for the North-West Coast."

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He hoped for support from the parties to the upcoming Tasmanian election.

"If we can get an indication of reasonable volumes, we can do an economic analysis about the viability of the saleyard," he said.

The committee has set up a questionnaire to help gauge support for the Mill Park site or an alternative at Minna Road.

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