President’s Report 2022

Upon reflection of last year’s meetings with the inconvenience of the pandemic with which we have persevered and held our meetings this year.

Our areas of concern this year have been:-

Along the coast

Mentone Lifesaving Clubhouse.

This huge new structure that has caused great damage to the clay cliffs at Mentone right up to the around the bay bike track is nearly finished. It has been elevated to protect it from future storm damage inevitable with climate change weather and rising tides. Why was this structure with so few of Victoria’s population using it, for so few months of the year, at such great expense was passed by D.W.E.L.P. and Kingston Council at such great expense? It does not blend into the landscape as building along the foreshore are supposed to do.

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President’s Report 2005

Well its been another busy year with many problems to grapple with and so thanks to all those members who coped with the load and again especially thanks to Secretary Mary R – a rhetorical question – what would we do without her? On behalf of all members thankyou Mary for another sterling effort.

Amid all the problems we faced two stand out and have been the main work for our Secretary Channel Deepening and Foreshore matters although the latter broke down into several aspects and Brian and Nina with enthusiastic support from Geoffrey did much work in the community re the Bike Trail along the Foreshore. Our big problem has been to convince Council that the best siting is along the edge of Beach Road. Sad to say it looks like much more work has to be done to convince them.

The Channel Deepening argument has been part of the Blue wedge campaign spearheaded by the Warfe family, notably Jenny, who has been indefatigable in her endeavours to involve a very wide range of people in the campaign. Compliments go also to Stephen Calvert – Smith for the support he has given. The arguments put forward by the members of the Blue Wedge campaign have certainly caused the members of the Environmental Panel to think hard about what is being proposed and the government may be hard put to convince a by now sceptical public on the matter.

Another long-standing matter for concern which looks like coming to a solution is Chicquita Park. Despite convincing argument by the Friends and especially by their President Neil Liddell the State Government have not yielded to their argument and yet again Kingston Council has called for submission s from the community. It’s a question of how many times do we have to say please look after our Open Space for them to get the message? Our colleague Councillor Rosemary West has battled hard and long for a good result. Let’s hope she prevails in the end.

It happened so long ago and has dragged on so much that it is easy (at least for one person) to forget that the Mordialloc Structure Plan was released in 2004. Not sure that any definitive word ahs been spoken re the Plan although several sites look as though they will have 4 storey buildings a erected on them and what is going to happen to the Pompei site? We know that the Monterey Pines have been chopped down – this latter has not been a total tragedy as we still think native trees are best for the area but when are we going to see some replacement planting’s?

Again we have worked closely with KRAMMED in their attempts to stem the tide of concrete sweeping over our region. Thanks again to our colleague Janelle House for all the work she does (and brings up a baby as well). We think we all –MBCL, KCEC and KRAMMED combined well to put the Open Space case to the consultants for the review. Would that we could be sure the council will follow up on all the good work put in by our members and colleagues. Must add our thanks to Greg Alabaster for the arguments put forward re open space most notably re the Linton Reserve and St Kilda Football Club development.

At the Panel hearing re the matter of Concrete crushers for siting in the green wedge Sec Mary again presented argument against the proposal. In this work she was supporting efforts by RAID and The Defenders of the South East Green Wedge. It is hard to believe we still have to argue to save the green wedge from such proposals but there is no shortage of people wanting to concrete everything in sight.

Not content with trips overseas Brian and Nina made a substantial submission to the Kingston Traffic Study and were on hand helping to get the Drills Land park off to a good start (still have not got an agreed name for the Park) and for good measure contributed to the matter of a Skateboard facility in Attenborough Reserve although on this a compromise was the best we could achieve.

We applauded and we hope assisted Mara and Judy in their efforts to control Dan Murphy and his band of rascals with their attempts to annoy the neighbourhood with their trucks in Melrose Street. Which reminds us that Mara was the inspiration for a doughty band of outdoor warriors protesting by the side of Nepean Highway re the four-storey development in the Main Street.

We went to several EGN meetings for a mixed result in support of great arguments penned by Dr Bill Hampel our respected colleague from the KCEC and we strove valiantly to get some sense re Water Quality measurements from Melbourne Water and Stephen Hains of Waterways fame. We are still waiting.
We did make a submission re Amendment C44 but that seems to have sunk without trace.
Again I think we can be proud of our efforts for yet another year.

Brian Pullen

President’s Report 2004

Looking at the list of items considered over the last twelve months is staggering and a credit to us as a group and especially creditable to the hard working members who made the big contributions. The list is as follows not in order of importance and not in chronological order but still impressive whatever way you look ait it.

  • Kingston Environmental Network
  • Blue Wedge Coalition
  • Foreshore Edn Group
  • Seminars attended
  • Scullin Reserve
  • Pitrones
  • Linton St Reserve
  • PPCC
  • Mordialloc 5 story Main St
  • Portsea Tender Process
  • Friends of Mentone Railway Reserve
  • Small Parks Sales
  • Edithvale Common
  • Woodlands lake 1
  • Sustainable Cities submission
  • Chicquita Prk
  • Epsom Housing Estate
  • NRA Team liaison
  • Skateboard Park
  • The Chain of Parks KCEC

We did spend a lot of time opposing plans to bring 5 story development to Mordialloc Main Street seeking community support for the opposition to the development. The community was alerted by proformas outlining the objections to the plan and waving placards along the highway entrance to Mordialloc. As is so often the case we certainly gained the local support but lost the case with the powers that be.
For Scullin Reserve we had more success (at the last estimate) having productive discussions with council officers. Much counting of parking spaces hopefully will keep council on track.
Our liaison with KRAMMED continues and we mutually worked together to bring cases to the community’s attention and presentation to VCAT.
Another good working relationship was established with the Blue Wedge Coalition in the work to save the bay from the disaster of channel deepening. Still mightily concerned that this battle may be lost. PPCC of course was involved in this case and MBCL members supported their efforts also. Of continuing concern is the assault on the Kingston’s open space notably in the sell off of small reserves in Clarinda, Chelsea and the worries about Linton St Reserve in Moorabbin.
In conjunction with KCEC we made a submission to the Sustainable Cities overview as well as a submission to the panel considering Chicquita Park which is still being considered by VCAT. Many of or even most of our members were participants in the Kingston Council Environmental Network Forum. A forum we think is useful but has still to prove itself. Certainly we were encouraged by the first review of the Council’s Open Space Strategy and look forward to hearing much more on this matter.
We continue as staunch supporters of KCEC and enjoy more than cordial relations with Kingston’s Natural Resources Team – Tony Collins is a friend of MBCL and is always welcome at our meetings when he comes to brief us on his team’s work.
Finally all the work doesn’t just happen we have members who are prepared to spend many hours of work on these projects., So biog thanks to Brian and Nina Earl on their great work on especially the Main St Mordialloc project, the Scullin reserve and the wary eye they keep on open spaces in and around Mordy. Thanks to Mara for her ever-inventive thoughts on how ‘to keep the bastards honest’. Thanks to Penny for her watchful eye on the foreshore and Mentone and reports on other parks (most notably The Grange). Thanks to Stephen for his thoughtful appraisal on all matters environmental especially as regards our (his?) Bay. Thanks to our Treasurer Frank who keeps a miserly eye on our finances we know its worthwhile if he lets us spend the money on it whatever ‘it’ is. Thanks to our mates in like minded organisations Bill Hampel at KCEC, Geoffrey Goode at PPCC, Janelle House at KRAMMED, Greg Alabaster at Linton St and certainly to Councillor Rosemary West for guiding us and alerting us to all matters in Kingston and beyond.
Finally I know you all want me to give the biggest thanks to our Secretary Mary who has worked on most if not all the projects mentioned and is a never failing inspiration to us all.

Brian Pullen

President’s Report 2003

This has been the year of Melbourne 2030 the State government’s attempt to sort out land planning for Melbourne and beyond. We and other like-minded groups made submissions for our ideas to be incorporated in the final document. Most pleasing was to see that some protection has been given to the green wedges by the creation of the Urban Growth Boundary (UGB) limiting incursions by the developers. Not so pleasing were the provisions for the built areas of Melbourne. The idea of activity centres has limited appeal and we do understand that if the population is to grow as predicted in Melbourne 2030 some increase in urban housing density is needed. However more thought needs to be given as to how to increase densities and where. Certainly we have become quite nervous about intentions in and around Mordialloc with submissions for 5-storey development on the old police station site in the offing. Again we give thanks and our admiration to Janelle House and to KRAMMED for the work being done to combat some of the more offensive features of the legislation. Nauru House and 55 King Street are still familiar addresses.

Importantly we contributed to the Mordialloc Structure Plan and through the efforts of Nina and Brian Earl alerted Council and councillors that we want more community consultation. This has happened but sadly the consultation often comes after decisions have been made not before so we are put in the position of having to oppose rather than cooperate. Submissions were made to Council about changes to Attenborough Park and Scullin Reserve – successfully we hope but another example of chasing a bolting horse.
During the year consultation and reporting on foreshore activities continued and we were fortunate to hear from two experts on Foreshore Management Mr Noel Kesby and Dr Eric Bird.
We have joined with the Friends of Chicquita Park in their struggle to save the park. As we see it the villains in this case are the Federal Government in selling the land in the first place. Hearings before a panel will take place in August and September this
Members like Mara Hayler and Brian Earl stood for council in March and
unfortunately or fortunately were not elected but did the necessary job of alerting the public to important issues in the community. Rosemary West was successful in being elected so with Topsy Petchey we feel we have at leat two good friends on the new Kingston Council.
Mentioning names is a tricky business as it too easy to overlook good efforts but I know all members will support me in fact expect me to once again thank our
Secretary, Mary Rimington for her inspiring work. Mary never ceases to amaze with her energy and application and surely she must be getting old by now – she does have grey hair!
Finally thanks to all members for contributions great or small – not least our thanks to Treasurer Frank both for keeping our finances in good order and for his now famous afternoon teas.

Brian Pullen

President’s Report 2002

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.

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President’s Report 2001

As usual this has been a busy year for the League with much work having to be done to safeguard our environment. So let me be quick to give thanks to all those who have had to bear the burden of this work and that usually means everyone to some extent or other. We know about couples in league like the Webbs in early England the Reids in early Victoria -here in Mordialloc we give especial thanks to the Rimingtons to our friends and tireless workers Frank and Mary. When I was first asked to become president of the League I accepted because I had seen that Mary did most of the work, she even seemed to enjoy writing submissions to a plethora of committees. Our heartfelt thanks to you both from all the members of the League.
We have had representatives on several committees most importantly the Kingston Foreshore policy Committee and we believe our efforts via Mary bore some fruit in the way of sensible policy decisions. Thanks are due to the team which assists Excel in monitoring changes in the growth of vegetation on the foreshore and thanks to Tony Collins for his co-operation with the League in this matter. We worked with KRAMMED to help with Kingston’s residential policy and it’s a pleasure to record our thanks to Janelle House and her team for the good work they do.
Brian and Nina Earl represented us on the Carrum Carrum Lowlands Forum which keeps a watchful eye on all matters of wetlands etc.
We were represented on the recently formed Defenders of the South East Green Wedge and even more lately by SERCHEC (Mary will tell what these letters mean). Suffice to say we have been heavily involved in efforts to keep south east lands green. In this regard we teamed with Kingston Conservation and Environment Coalition in making representations to the Minister for Planning. We did mange to see his representatives a couple of times and I once was able to press into his hands the pamphlet produced by the DOSEGW. This is the place to say thanks to Barry Ross who has been a great help and inspiration in green wedge matters and for the occasional trip to see that the Waterways people are being honest!

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