Charleston Dam

Charleston Dam

Etheridge Shire Council has been investigating the building of a dam which is to be located about six kilometres downstream of Forsayth and about 31 kilometres upstream of Georgetown on the Delaney River; principally for town water supply purposes.  Although the primary purpose of the dam is to supplement the water supplies for Forsayth and Georgetown, provision of recreation facilities is considered by Council to be an important facet of the project.

To ensure that this project has all the necessary approvals in place and can stand up to any public scrutiny, Council needs to ensure that it has lawful access to the water contained within the Dam for Community Purposes (Town Water Supply) for the townships of Forsayth and Georgetown, otherwise the Capital Investment being outlaid could be seen as a waste of public funds.

The proposed Dam is within the planning area of the Water Resource (Gulf) Plan 2007 and Gulf Resource Operations Plan 2010.

Currently, 5,000ML of water in the Gilbert River catchment is identified in the Water Resource (Gulf) Plan 2007 as a strategic reserve (strategic unallocated water) for various purposes including town water supply.  Council has secured an allocation from the Department to extract water from the Charleston Dam under the Water Resource (Gulf) Plan 2007.  

All Statutory Approvals are in place such as:

Planning Approval

  • Decision Notice issued to Council on the 16th August 2017

Council has completed the following negotiations with the Traditional Owners of the Land (Ewamian People)

Cultural Heritage

  • Cultural Heritage Management Agreement – completed (signed as at 13th day of May 2015)

  • Cultural Heritage Site Inspection – completed  (as at 19th day of June 2015)

  • Cultural Heritage Site Report – completed

Native Title

  • ILUA (Indigenous Land Use Agreement) has been negotiated and agreed upon by both parties. – The ILUA has been signed and registered as at 15 October 2015. 

Water Allocation

  • Water allocation approval
  • Application to raise a barrier in a water course – approved 14th September 2018 (subject to conditions)


For additional planning information, click the links below:

Sketch A  Recreational Area - Concept MasterPlan Overview - Charleston Dam


Recreation Area Concept Video