Perhaps you might consider joining this highly active Committee, due for re-election at the 1997 Annual General Meeting, or you can help out by joining one of the many sub-committees. So please let the Committee know if you wish to nominate any member by contacting Max Sargent (Membership Secretary) on 9480 5492
The 1997 Friends Annual General Meeting will be held at 2pm Sunday February 9 1997 at the CERES Education Centre-Lee St Brunswick East
Hope to meet you there.
The Australian Heritage Commission has decided to list the Craigieburn to Cooper Street Grasslands on the Register of the National Estate.
This fantastic news is a great start for the new year!
The Heritage listing is not only a signifiacant step towards increasing the awareness about native grasslands, but it provides a major argument against Federal funding for the Hume Freeway. And you heard it first right here: the Heritage Commission probably won't publicly announce the listing until it actually occurs in May
This is part of the Commission's Statement of Significance:
"The Craigieburn to Cooper Street grasslands are some of the best remaining examples of the grasslands which covered much of the western basalt plains before European settlement. Together they represent one of the largest remaining areas of plains grassland in Victoria, a community which is considered to be endangered in Victoria and contains patches of grassy wtlands, a severely depleted community. The riparain scrub growing along the Merri Creek corridor south from Craigieburn is one of the few intact examples of this vegetation remaining on basalt in the State"
The grasslands were nominated by the Victorian National Parks Association (VNPA) with the full support of the Friends. James Ross, Grasslands Project Officer at the VNPA< put in an incredible amount of work surveying the area, indentifying plant species and liasing with the Heritage Commission. As James is leaving VNPA shortly, this will be a great farewell present for him. James has been a terrific asset to the Friends and we thank him very much for all his work on grasslands and help over the years. We wish him the best of luck wherever he goes.
Hopefully, the next news that we hear from the Heritage Commission will be the announcement of their decision to also list the "Merri Merri" Gorge area (around Barry Road Craigieburn), which was nominated in April 1993 by Ann McGregor and Judy Bush on behalf of the Friends. Currently, this is due to be considered by the Commission in April.
Friends News Desk
Cootamundra Walk Advisory Committee was first endorsed by Nunawading Council in 1978. We now work under the city of Whitehorse Council. As a Committee we meet five or six times a year although we meet on various activity days with our wider circle of 'Friends'- those wonderful folk who don hats, gloves and boots to come out and plant, weed or spread mulch.
Similar Committees and 'Friends' groups work in Blackburn Lake Sanctuary, Wandinong Sanctuary, Creeklands, Wurunjeri Walk, Bellbird Dell, R.E Gray Reserve, Simpsons Park-Somers Trail, Antonio Park and Campbell's Croft.
Box Hill Green Link has established an urban forest along the Koonung Valley and Bushy Creek Reserve, Box Hill, in the last few years.
With Council amalgamations and the introduction of contract tendering things are changing. Council is certainly committed to the preservation and enhancement of our bushland parks. In May, Parks Wide, the in-house tema, won the contract to maintain all parks and reserves in the City of Whitehorse. A small crew will now be working on an occasional basis in the park. In addition 'Save the Bush' working out of the National Trust, will be assisting with the retention of of the remnant bush. Bushland parks need an enormous amount of 'hands on' care and while there will never be enough, this is more than we have had in the past. It is vital that we, as a community, also assist from time to time. If you feel you have a little time to spare, would like to learn more about our local plants and enjoy being out in the open air, please contact the Council or a member of the Committee.
Green Task Force
For the past three or four years we have enjoyed having groups of young people from Greening Australia come to work in the park. These programs were established to facilitate community restoration projects and to provide training to increase skills in environmental activities. The success in delivering these programs has been achieved through the strong commitment to providing quality services coupled with a commitment to providing practical skills for the unemployed. Through these activities Task Force has planted 170,00 indigenous plants and completed numerous projects involving re-vegetation, remnant protection, vegetation assessment, construction of boardwalks, fences, viewing platforms and nursery facilities in the Melbourne area.
Prior to the August Federal Budget there was an 80% cut in funding for these programs. We are now awaiting clarification of the implications this will have. What we do know is that we have not had the Task Force help in Cootamundra Walk this year
Mitcham Lions Project
On a happier note, the Mitcham Lions have 'adopted' an area near Bell St which has been cleaned up and mulched. Forks and wheelbarrows recently came out in force when about 40 metres of mulch was spread in one afternooon. Planting of small grasses and wildflowers will commence in May.
Another special group of 'Friends' who helped put about 500 plants into the ground during the Spring Planting Festival in September are the Baha'i community. Making a home ih a new country is not always easy. By coming along to planting days these families are not only helping make our park a special place for all, but showing their commitment to the community in a very practical way.
Clean Up Australia in Cootamundra Walk
Held in March, Mitcham Lions joined forces with the Blackburn North Lions to participate in this Australia wide activity. Thanks!
Would you like to be a Cootamundra Walk Friend?
Join our Committee. You don't have to know a lot about vegetation. We will help you learn.
Come and help care for the park. Friends have fun working together.
Pick up a little rubbish and take it home to either re-cycle or put in your bin.
Report any untoward behaviour to the Council or the Committee.
Report any pollution in the creek or any other matter that needs attention. Contact the Committee or Melbourne Water (9874 2122).
Grow a few indigenous (local ) plants in your garden. NIPP (Nunawading Indigenous Plant Project), a local community group, is based at the Horticultural Centre, Jolimont Rd Forest Hill: open every Friday morning and the fourth Sunday of every month.
Detroy plants dangerous to our environment eg Ivy, Wandering Jew, Blackberry etc.
Please do not throw any garden waste of any kind into the park.
Have a picnic in the park. Watch the birds and look at the plants.
Much has been done and much is planned. We would welcome your help and comments.
Please contact the Council on 9262 6333 or
Cootamundra Walk Advisory Committee on 9878 5998.