It is a sobering task looking over the issues the League has been involved in over the last 12 months- we should all be pleased that we have contributed in at least some way to managing our environment for the better. Let me say early some have been harder workers than others by which I mean that as usual we acknowledge the great amount of work done by our Secretary Mary. Using the word “great” both in the sense of volume of work done and in the sense of quality of the work – again our Thanks to you Mary. Sad to say one of our first outcomes in the year was our loss in the case of the disposal of Sewage Sludge into the borrow pit at Woodlands (Braeside). It seems we did not have much hope even from the start as the Council mismanaged the method of objecting to the land fill in the first place.
Our friends from parks in the area have had much good work to report on and some notable successes during the year. Vice President Penny Maguire -White Secretary of The Grange reported the completion of the work to enable them to release a CD about their park. The vermin proof fence after some trials has been doing its job. Braeside Park is supported by a strong Friends group but like many others would like to see even more support. The Propagation Group led by our colleague Ron Pearson has continued to produce over 25,000 plants per year. Also the Heritage Trail was opened by the local MHR Ann Corcoran late in 2001, actually on election day, so Ann had a busy and successful day. Brian and Nina Earl reported on the success of work at Bradshaw Park and although nothing spectacular to report this last year it continues to be a significant park for the preservation of indigenous plant species. Work at Drills land (soon to have a new name when everyone is agreed on the name) has been up and down – it seems difficult to get all those involved enthusiastic at the same time. A proposal to make the wetland a peaty salt marsh wetland received wide support but there may be second thoughts on this idea. Rowan Woodlands would benefit by a friends group. Probably the saddest result for the year is the loss of Chicquita Park although we should not completely write it off as even now there is still a chance of a result benefiting the push for retention of at least some of the Park. Our thanks go to Rosemary West heavily involved in the fight to save the area.
We took part in Kingston Council’s work to compile a Significant Tree Register- our rep on the Steering Committee was Stephen Calvert-Smith and we attended the launch of the policy at Brindisi Street. A good move for the environment and we congratulate Kingston Council for this initiative and hope it results in the preservation of many more of our trees especially some native trees often endangered in the rush to lay ever more concrete!
Glen Agnew continues to keep us informed on what is happening to our Bay especially in the Mordialloc Chelsea area. Not all of it is good news but thank you to Glen for his work and trust he will at last get some help (i.e. financial help) to keep the work going. We continue to assist Kingston’s Natural Resources Team with photo point monitoring — this is the sort of work whose value is seen after certainly months maybe years of effort. Thanks to the wielders of the cameras.
We have been represented by Secretary Mary at numerous seminars workshops and committees and with no apology for repeating myself thanks Mary for a great job in relation to Mordialloc Pride of the Bay in conjunction with our good friend Janelle House another tireless worker, for the submissions to the Hazardous Waste Siting committee, the Dandenong Council re Amendment C27 (another bash at the green wedge) and the related Keysborough South Development Plan; for the submission to Parks Victoria re “Linking People and Spaces” and for others I no doubt have overlooked or forgotten. There is also the work, never finished, re the Foreshore especially north of the creek but thanks also for keeping an eye on recalcitrants south of the creek- this latter in conjunction with Glenda Byrne. Incidentally thanks to Glenda for the fine job she is doing with the KCEC newsletter where we get a chance to air our views.
Last but not least we have expended many hours on the struggle to defend the green wedge for us especially the South East Green Wedge but our member Rosemary West has spent hours on the greater struggle for the preservation of all the green wedges in the metropolitan area. Thank you Rosemary for your gigantic efforts and congratulations for the work done by Barry Ross in this also.
We are represented on the KCEC, Port Phillip Conservation Council the Carrum Carrum Lowlands Forum, The Defenders of the South East Green Wedge – we are a busy lot may we continue to have the energy to continue the good fight.