Media Release by The Hon Jenny Macklin MP

Street names and street lights for Alice Springs town camps

Joint Media Release with:

  • Warren Snowdon MP, Minister for Indigenous Health, Member for Lingiari
    Karl Hampton MLA, Northern Territory Minister for Central Australia

Three Alice Springs town camps have agreed on street names that have significance to their communities.

Federal Minister for Indigenous Affairs, Jenny Macklin, and NT Minister for Central Australia, Karl Hampton, said street naming was an important step towards normalising town camps in Alice Springs.

“Naming the streets helps the town camps to become part of the wider community,” Ms Macklin said.

“Houses can now be formally numbered, enabling a regular postal service and leading to better access for emergency services such as Police and ambulance.”

Mr Hampton said Alice Springs should be proud of the work taking place on town camps and that naming streets was one of the positive steps, along with improved infrastructure and service delivery.

“The street names suggested by Charles Creek, Kunoth and Morris Soak town camps recognise key family members and the early days when families first settled in these areas, which is an important part of the town’s history,” Mr Hampton said.

“It is also great to see work on infrastructure upgrades progressing well in Trucking Yards. After many years of inadequate and failing street lighting, Trucking Yards had 18 new street lights turned on last Friday.

“These new lights will significantly increase security for residents, making it a safer environment throughout the night.”

The street lights have been installed as part of a new and enhanced power infrastructure for the Trucking Yards town camp, including new mains connection, power poles, lines and house connections. These improvements will raise the standard of infrastructure at Trucking Yards to a level comparable with the rest of Alice Springs.

Town camp residents are also benefiting from improved access to public transport.

Residents have welcomed the introduction of expanded bus routes which provide an affordable means of transport to go shopping, attend medical appointments and access other important services in town.

The Northern Territory Government will continue to undertake consultation about naming the streets in the town camps. Public comment on the names proposed by the Charles Creek, Kunoth and Morris Soak town camps is being sought, and should be submitted to Cynthia Lang-Jeffries, contact 89 515 609. The names will be forwarded to the Northern Territory Government’s Place Names Committee next month.

The $150 million Alice Springs Transformation Plan is a partnership between the Northern Territory and Australian Governments.

Proposed street names and meanings

Charles Creek (Anthelk-Ewlpaye):

  • Little Flower
    This is the name of the mission established on the Bungalow Reserve north of Anzac Hill during the 1930s. Many fringe camps were established during this time along the creek bed. Charles Creek and Kunoth town camps were also part of the original fringe camps of the 1930s. Charles Creek and Kunoth town camps make up the Anthelk-Ewlpaye Housing Association.
  • Atyunpe: a-chorn-pa
    Central Australian Arrernte for Perentie (a large lizard and a traditional food).

Kunoth Camp (Anthelk-Ewlpaye):

  • Paddy’s Place
    Named after Paddy Tucker, the first person to establish a camp site under an ironwood tree at the very site where Kunoth Camp now exists. Mr Tucker was held in high esteem by local families.

Morris Soak (Akngwertnarre):

  • Lechleitner: lek-light-ner
    The main access road is to be named after Dick Francis Lechleitner, an Aboriginal activist who walked two worlds. Through his association with the Central Australian Aboriginal Congress, the Moving Forward Project and Tangentyere Council, he fought hard for the establishment of town camp leases, including Morris Soak. He was renowned for being an independent artist during the early stages of the Western Desert Art movement. He served as a board member of Tangentyere, a delegate for Central Land Council and as a regional councillor on the Papunya Regional Council of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Commission.
  • Miller
    This road comes off Lechleitner. Miller is a past and present family name affiliated with the history of this camp. Family members still reside here.
  • Glenmon
    The name is derived from combining the Christian names of two sisters who were part of the original family group that established Morris Soak. Glenda and Mona Miller were artists who married into the Curtis and Forrester families. Both women are held in high regard by present residents who wish to commemorate them both with the naming of this road.
  • Walter Forrester Park
    Walter Forrester was a member of one of the original family groups to settle at Morris Soak. He established a small area as a park in which children could play safely, and later developed a small orchard on the site of the park. He was dedicated to the maintenance of this park.