No plans to replace Meander bridges

DOUBT has been cast over future vehicle access to one of Tasmania's top 10 bushwalks as part of a land transfer between Forestry Tasmania and the Parks and Wildlife Service.

Meander Falls access bridges over Mother Cummings Rivulet and Meander River were destroyed in floods early 2011.

The site is a popular tourist destination and a valued asset for the Meander Valley region, although reinstatement of the bridges has not yet been planned.

Meander Valley Mayor Craig Perkins yesterday said the council received frequent feedback about Meander Falls access and urged the state government or the forestry organisation to see the bridges reconstructed.

``Our view is that they are really important pieces of infrastructure,'' Cr Perkins said.

``Those falls walks in particular are part of the top-10 walks in Tasmania, it's important that we see work being done to reinstate them.''

A Forestry Tasmania spokesman said temporary access on a four-wheel drive fire break had been placed along the border of a former Gunns plantation.

``Because of the cost and recurrence of floods in the area it was deemed the bridges ought not be replaced,'' the spokesman said.

``However, endeavours to make the temporary access permanent were affected by the plantation owner being placed in receivership.''

The land is due to be transferred to Parks and Wildlife and will be part of an ongoing  audit of assets, according to Parks Northern Region acting manager Stan Matuszek.

``The reserve in question remains the responsibility of Forestry Tasmania until such time as the lands are formally transferred to the Parks and Wildlife Service,'' Mr Matuszek said.

He said the audit would help the department decide how to progress any placement of future infrastructure.

Twelve North-West bushwalkers were stranded for 18 hours at Meander Falls in July when heavy rain prevented their return over Meander River and Mother Cummings Rivulet.

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