Geraldine and Alston McKay own an on-farm bakery and have long advocated for the remaining 17.4km of the gravel road to be sealed.
In March, Mrs McKay told the NVI that they avoid using the road to transport their baked goods because it is rough and dust gets sucked into the refrigerated trucks.
“It is a momentous occasion for so many people over such a long time,” she said.
“For the people who have been here far longer than us, who have been working on it for so long, it’s such a rewarding day. We’re so excited.
“It’s great to see the three levels of government coordinate to bring the project together and the will of everyone involved to push for the whole of the community’s benefit.”
The McKays avoid using the road to travel to Boggabri where possible, instead driving through Gunnedah, which adds another half an hour to the trip and increases the cost of fuel.
Mrs McKay said her husband had used the road to get to Boggabri just days before the announcement.
“He came back and he said, ‘That’s scary. You need to go and have a look at that’,” she said.
“He was doing 60kms an hour a lot of the trip, which is ridiculous.”
Mrs McKay said once the road was completely sealed, they would save time.
“It will make some things more achievable to attend, heading north as well, the less half hour on the trip,” she said.
“We will be on it the first opportunity we get. We’re chomping at the bit.”
Fellow farmer Mick Reynolds lives on the Grain Valley Road in the midst of the gravel section leading into Mullaley and said “it’s about time” the road was sealed.
“I manage a property along there and it’s a prick of a road,” he said.
“I’ve pushed people off it that have rolled [their vehicles]. It’s just dangerous.
“I’ve had windscreens busted and know people who have had tractor windscreens busted.”
It is a momentous occasion for so many people over such a long time.- Geraldine McKay
Mr Reynolds said he avoided the gravel whenever possible.
“I can drive through the farm and dodge it. I used to dodge it if I didn’t have to come into town specifically,” he said.
“My road is better than that road and a lot safer.”
Mr Reynold’s house is only 500m off the road and gets the full force of the dust.
“I have a swimming pool that’s full of mud and washing’s a problem,” he said.
“You don’t go out of an afternoon when the wind is blowing that way.”
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