In 2009 an Undera landholder handed over two hectares of riverfront land on his property for perpetual protection of an ancient Aboriginal burial site where skeletal remains have twice been discovered in the past 50 years.
The handover was the first Cultural Heritage Agreement in Victoria to be signed under the Aboriginal Heritage Act 2006. Mr Knaggs, the property owner, said he knew the area contained an Aboriginal burial site when he bought 890 ha at Undera north about a year ago.
Yorta Yorta Nation Aboriginal Corporation chairman Neville Atkinson thanked Mr Knaggs for handing over the land. “There is a lot of talk about reconciliation but this is a good example of tangible reconciliation,” Mr Atkinson said. “This whole process would be a lot harder without landowners like Robin Knaggs.” Mr Atkinson said the area had been known as a burial site for decades. He said skeletal remains were discovered when sand was removed from the area to help create the Undera football oval in the 1960s. Recreational damage in the area uncovered further remains earlier this decade. Mr Atkinson also said the corporation was in discussions with Melbourne academic institutions to repatriate more remains (courtesy of the Shepparton News).