About 100 residents attended a meeting organised by the Belubula Headwaters Protection Group to discuss the Regis Resource's McPhillamy's Gold Mine in Kings Plain last Thursday.
BHPG vice president Rebecca Price said the mood of the meeting was mostly positive, but plenty of residents were unaware of the smaller development down at Discovery Ridge near Mandurama.
The meeting talked through the specifics of Regis' plans, the impact on the waterways and water at the head of the Belubula River and the potential impacts on residents, some of whom may live less than a kilometre from the site of the project along the Mid-Western Highway.
Mrs Price said most people were "buoyed" by the number of people in attendance, most of whom felt informed enough to continue telling others about the meeting and about where the project was at.
However, she said the positive start turned to "disbelief ... that something like this could happen so close to them".
"There's slight disbelief and frustration, people don't really know what's going on," she said.
There was also concern the Discovery Ridge part of the project might not be subject to the same planning criteria as the Kings Plain gold mine, although Mrs Price said BHPG were unsure of the exact planning specifications of the smaller mine.
She said it would be one of the many questions put to Regis staff next week when public meetings and consultations will be held.
Mrs Price said Regis was invited to Thursday night's meeting, but the mining company was unable to make the date.
The group is encouraging people to have their say and write into submissions when the project opens to public discussion.
They are also urging people to head along to the Regis Recourses-organised meeting from 6pm to 9pm on May 23 at the Blayney Community Centre.