NSW Nationals Member for Cootamundra Steph Cooke gained a glimpse into a sustainable future for tourism when she visited a Mount Adrah Farm to announce a $99,080 grant.

Ms Cooke visited Highland Farm and Woodland to present owner Louise Freckelton with a Regional Tourism Fund grant to help with the construction of an eco-hut. The hut will enable visitors to stay in a modern building made from reused materials with solar and battery power, and enjoy birdwatching, bushwalking, mountain bike riding as well as some tasty treats.

“This is such an exciting idea and shows what happens when somebody combines a love of the land with innovative thinking,” Ms Cooke said. “Louise has come up with an idea which will make for a fantastic holiday destination, and it’s a pleasure to be able to help grow tourism in the Cootamundra electorate with a Regional Tourism Fund grant. This area will attract visitors who enjoy walking or cycling in the beautiful landscapes here, while birdwatchers will be drawn by the prospect of seeing some of the 127 different species found here. And as if that wasn’t enough, the hut will have a kitchen where cooking enthusiasts can prepare a fine meal using produce direct from Louise’s farm and enjoy a magical evening dinner on the hut’s veranda.”

Ms Freckelton said she was also discussing an additional opportunity for visitors to the eco-hut.

“The hut will be on the boundary of our conservation area so people can go walking or cycling or birdwatching, and we can offer an introduction to birdwatching and loan a pair of binoculars,” she said. “But we are also negotiating with local Wiradjuri representatives looking at leading a tour on the property, where we have found some extraordinary and beautiful heritage. And if people are bringing their kids, we will have lambs for them to get to know and feed too.”