Gloucester finding optimism in industry diversity as Yancoal mines wind down

AS COAL mines along the Bucketts Way wind down, taking jobs and economic benefits with them, residents in the Upper Hunter town of Gloucester are "excited" about the potential of other industries in the area.

 

Third generation dairy farmer Chris Maslen. Picture: Simone De Peak

According to REMPLAN data, "Agriculture, Forestry and Fishing" is the largest industrial sector in the Gloucester region. Accounting for more than $120 million - almost 18 per cent - of the region's total output, it provides 339 of the 1794 jobs.

Third generation dairy farmer, Chris Maslen, has a bittersweet relationship with the coal industry.

In 2012, after more than two years of negotiations, Mr Maslen sold his farm to Gloucester Resources Limited (GRL) for the proposed Rocky Hill coal mine. Due to his land not being earmarked for immediate mining, Mr Maslen was able to lease his 278 hectares, along with surrounding properties, off GRL for a period of 10 years.