Knapping floor in Coomera on Foxwell Road

The Department of Education is building a new high school on Foxwell Rd Coomera.  Jabree Ltd conducted a staged cultural heritage assessment of the project site in 2018 and 2019.

This site contains two lots, each was excavated separately but are two parts of the same whole.

Lot 5 was the first of the two to be excavated, it contained a total of 223 artefacts, including six cores and three artefacts that showed secondary working. It had an artefact density of three artefacts per square metre and has been designated as a knapping floor. Given its location, including the potential for food, resource and water gathering there is a strong possibility that this site was also used for camping or as a traditional pathway. It has been assessed as having high Aboriginal cultural heritage value and moderate to high scientific significance.

Throughout the excavation of Lot 6 a total of 453 artefacts were uncovered. Of these artefacts seven were found to be cores while the remaining artefacts were flakes and flake fragments. It had a very high artefact density of 10 artefacts per square metre. This site has been classified as a knapping floor with the potential for occupation having occurred, it has been assessed as having high Aboriginal cultural heritage value and moderate to high scientific significance.

Jabree team excavating at Lot 6

This site represents a further link in the cultural heritage of the Foxwell Road Ridge landscape and together with the Oaky Creek Ridge artefact scatter, they create a larger picture of the area. These sites represent a potential pathway or even camping site that was used by the original owners and is visible today through the artefacts that remain.

Jabree has not recommended any further cultural assessment take place on either Lot 5 or 6. The Aboriginal Cultural Heritage Act 2003(Qld) places all persons in Queensland under a duty of care to take all reasonable and practical measures to ensure they do not harm Aboriginal cultural heritage whenever they undertake an activity. In accordance with these guidelines Jabree has made recommendations for both Lot 5 and 6 of the Foxwell road site, including the following:

  • Ensuring The Department of Education and its contractors are aware of their duty of care obligations under the Aboriginal Cultural Heritage Act 2003(Qld).
  • Implementation and compliance with the Cultural Heritage Management Agreement including;
  • The Chance Finds Protocol in the case that any cultural heritage objects are exposed during the project
  • Jabree Limited requests that The Department of Education consider the analysis of finds for inclusion in an interpretive display of Aboriginal cultural heritage located within the Coomera State High School grounds (to be combined with the findings of the Lot 5 cultural heritage assessment).
  • The spiritual and cultural significance of artefacts can be strongly tied to their place and location on traditional lands.  As such, Jabree Limited requests that the cultural material recovered from the assessment of the Lot 6 Site be repatriated through reburial at an appropriate location within the school grounds, along with the artefacts recovered from the Lot 5 site.
  • Jabree Limited agrees to coordinate the delivery of a cultural workshop to students of Coomera State High School at a date to be confirmed once the school is completed. The workshop will include a discussion about the artefacts found on site during the cultural heritage salvage as well as cultural activities delivered by Rick Roser including stone tool making, fire making, ochre painting and boomerang throwing. The repatriation of cultural material could form part of the cultural workshop.
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