Sect's plans cause a stir

Sydney Morning Herald/May 5, 2008

Plans by the controversial *Exclusive Brethren* sect to build a church and school in a semi-rural area on the Central Coast have upset residents who had meetings with Gosford councillors yesterday to raise their concerns.

Days after an Exclusive Brethren school proposed for a small town near Lake Macquarie was rejected, Gosford City Council is considering a development application from the sect to convert a one-storey house in MacDonalds Road, Lisarow, into a church accommodating 40 people. The sect has spoken to the council about a longer term plan to build a church for up to 500 people, and a school.

Residents are worried that what they describe as a peaceful rural valley will be turned into a "bitumen parking lot" and that the one-lane dirt road leading to the property will be clogged with traffic.

The Brethren could not be contacted for comment.

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