United call to save site

KNOWN by locals as ‘Hero’s Hill’, the former Revesby Heights Ex-Servicemen’s Club at Revesby Heights is back on the market for sale or lease.

At last week’s council meeting, Canterbury Bankstown Labor Councillors Steve Tuntevski and Linda Downey called on the State Government to step in and buy the 3,200sqm site for “the purpose of community use and to preserve the local, historical value of the site”.
Cr Tuntevski said he was saddened to see the building so badly neglected.
“It’s a complete desecration of the site, particularly when there are stories that some returned soldiers have had their ashes scattered across the site as their final resting place,” he said.
“As soon as I learnt that the site was for sale, I thought it’s a rare opportunity to buy it, particularly when I heard that the Berejiklian State Government have programs and set aside $290 million in funds to buy lands such as in this very situation.”
Council will now write to the NSW State Government requesting it purchase the site.
An amendment by Liberal Crs Glen Waud and George Zakhia calling for Council to make a financial contribution to buying the site was rejected, but Cr Waud told the Torch he hoped the Council and the State Government could work together to resolve the matter.
Also urging all levels of government to work together “to return Hero’s Hill back to the people”, State MP for East Hills Wendy Lindsay said it was an issue that needed to be addressed.
It isn’t the first call for the site to be purchased for community use, with former Bankstown councillor Jim Daniel unsuccessfully calling for that Council to buy it in 2015, two years after the club ceased trading with debts exceeding $2 million.
Subsequent applications in 2016 and 2017 by the Kogarah-based Al-Jaafaria Society to redevelop the dilapidated site into an Islamic community centre were also rejected by the Council amid a fierce community backlash.