Question: Why “Central Coast Plateau”?
We are often asked why the name Central Coast Plateau Chamber of Commerce was chosen. There were a number of reasons when discussing a suitable name for the selection.
After the 1999 Newcastle Disease event, a couple of large public meetings of community members decided that a Chamber of Commerce was needed to address the issues affecting businesses on the mountain. What is not reported, among other things, is that there was also a consensus that the area, and the Chamber, has a name of identity and inclusivity for the whole area, mainly west of the M1, in lieu of always needing to explain where the mountain was geographically. Singular names of any of our village entities, which make up our community, namely, Peats Ridge, Somersby, Kulnura, Mangrove Mountain, Calga, Mount White and Central Mangrove, did not describe our whole community.
Locals have used ‘mountain’ in a parochial sense, for years, in a time when everyone on the coast knew where the mountain referred to; an era when it took hours to do your shopping in Gosford or Wyong because you knew nearly every person you met. That is no longer the case even for those of us who have lived here for a long time.
Gosford City Council used the term plateau on a number of occasions in the past, particularly to the Somersby Plateau.
Geographically, our area is made up of four plateau areas. If it were not, then there would be little ability to have such a productive agricultural industry. Perhaps we should have added an ‘x’ to the name. Have a look at an aerial photo and you will see what I mean.
Visitors, including exchange students, over many years particularly those from Switzerland, Chile, Canada, New Zealand and Japan, have queried where the mountain was.
- A natural raised part of the earth’s surface, higher than a hill. I don’t know, but would think, that this was the reason for the misnamed Mangrove Mountain, an extension of the mangroves growing at Lower Mangrove on Mangrove Creek, all very descriptive, at the top of Pemberton’s Hill.
- A large flat area of high elevation. We just happen to be lucky to have several flat areas with some very historical names – Peats Ridge after George Peats (also Peats Ferry); Kulnura, the only place in the world with that name apparently, named by a committee of seven residents; Somersby named after an English village, the home of a Poet Laureate, Alfred, Lord Tennyson (there should still be a framed photo taken in Somersby, England, for Marigold Lawrence many, many years ago, in the Somersby School of Arts).
Time moves on and we must be prepared to move with the times, especially when we rely so much on governments of all persuasions to provide quite a lot more than the dirt roads I grew up with and the locally built, managed and maintained resources. I cannot stress enough how important it is for an identifiable and inclusive name for our combined communities.
I trust the above explanation finally gives you a logical explanation for the name, Central Coast Plateau Chamber of Commerce.
A discussion, in person, with the Geographical Names Board in Bathurst some years ago, gave agreement that that agency actually wanted geographically identifiable regional names, so that when the Central Coast was recognised as a named geographical area (locals had always called it so as it was geographically half way between Sydney and Newcastle), it seemed a good time to finally have an identity for our area that policy makers could relate to and recognise. A small but very necessary step to gaining more funding and resources than we do at present.
The politicians I speak to from outside this area never question where the Central Coast Plateau is….surely even the most parochial amongst us can appreciate the importance of being a recognisable region.
Central Coast Plateau Chamber of Commerce