Planned road construction works in Horrocks have ground to a halt after the surprise discovery of a potential historical Aboriginal hunting and food processing site. The midden site — containing a distinct concentration of shell, bone, botanical remains, ash and charcoal — was found during the land subdivision process as part of works to create of a road reserve for the construction of Little Bay Road from the existing road through to Little Bay itself. Discarded shells and other materials found could be the remains of a single meal or the result of repeated use of a particular location over thousands of years. Before any road works can start, the Yamatji Southern Regional Council has advised the Shire of Northampton must conduct a site identification survey to determine the cultural value of the spot. In a report being presented to council on Friday, Shire chief executive Garry Keeffe said alternative road works may need to be considered. “If the site is found to be of significant cultural heritage and approval is not provided to allow the road reserve to traverse through the area, then an alternative route within the area will need to be identified, which is going to be extremely difficult giving the terrain at this location,” he said. Mr Keeffe said two quotes from consultants qualified to conduct the survey had been obtained, with Sticks and Stones Cultural Resources Management estimating the process to cost $21,166, while Trace Archaeologists suggest they could do the job for $13,508. “The reason for the difference in the costs is that SandS CRM involve Yamatji Southern Regional Council consultants and heritage services providers, whereas Trace Archeologists do not,” he said. “It is considered that it would be in the Shire’s best interest to ensure this road is constructed, that local YSRC representatives are involved in the survey. The YSCR officer who the CEO has been dealing with on this matter recommended SandS CRM in their advice.” The report recommended council approve the expenditure of $22,000 to complete the survey, with councillors to discuss the motion at the end of the week.