Pacific National Terminal opening a nostalgic moment for Parkes mayor

What really was once a sheep paddock that belonged to the Keith family of Parkes for almost 100 years, now is the Pacific National Parkes Logistics Terminal.

It was a sentimental day for Parkes Mayor Ken Keith OAM when Pacific National officially opened its new $35 million terminal in Brolgan Road on October 30.

The mayor was among the dignitaries who spoke at the ceremony, where he shared his family's connection with the site and what it meant to him.

He praised the efforts of Parkes Shire Council staff before him - namely the late Mayor Robert Wilson OAM and former General Manager Alan McCormack - and current council staff, as well as governments who "shared the same vision for a logistics hub at Parkes".

"From a personal note could I say that my grandfather actually bought this land we're on... nearly 97 years ago," Cr Keith said at the ceremony.

"The western line, Sydney to Perth, went through the bottom part of his place, and now the north Inland Rail line is going to go through the eastern side of his place, or what was his place.

"We've got three generations of Keiths that have lived on this land and it's been a privilege to see how it's developed, and I know that my forebears would be just so delighted to see the way this hub has developed.

"They always had a vision to work for the community and serve the community, and they would really be delighted to see what's been built on the land that they acquired.

"It really is a nostalgic moment for me today."

UNVEILING: Hiding behind the black sheet with the official opening plaque was a special surprise for Parkes Mayor Ken Keith OAM, a road sign with his name on it.

UNVEILING: Hiding behind the black sheet with the official opening plaque was a special surprise for Parkes Mayor Ken Keith OAM, a road sign with his name on it.

The mayor admitted having to step back from promoting the logistics hub and the Inland Rail had been one of the most frustrating 18 months of his life.

"When we came to the conclusion... that the area we needed for the Parkes Logistics Hub wasn't going to be big enough for what our big vision was, and the Special Activation Precinct that evolved out of those discussions meant that I - because of the obvious conflict of interest - had to step away from it all," he said.

"And I found that very hard... [not] talking about Inland Rail and what we were doing in the hub. But the team has continued on and I've got to congratulate (General Manager) Kent [Boyd] and the council staff and councillors for their continued driving of this project when I've had to step away from it."

Because of this special and historic connection Cr Keith has with the site, Pacific National decided to name their internal road Ken Keith OAM Drive, presenting the road sign to Cr Keith following the speeches on the day.

The gesture and link made even sweeter when Cr Keith said his grandfather's name was also Kenny.

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