Treasured trees could outlive us, if we care enough
There’s a patch of bushland at the end of Daydawn Ave, Warners Bay. The trees on this land are considered precious by Shaun McLeod who is working to protect some of what remains, especially the trees. Shaun is the human voice who speaks on behalf of those without a voice, Shaun writes:
“Edna May Cornford in the late 1930s planted the native Lilly Pilly Tree (left) whilst she and her husband Clarence Cornford tended to their stone fruit orchard at East Munibung Hill.
Between 2013-15 Edna’s grand daughter Penny (Williams) McLeod planted the ornamental Fig Tree (centre) & the flowering Red Eucalyptus tree (right) at the bottom of the water depression, with the purpose being to reduce soil creep or land slip movement down the slope,” says Shaun.
Penny’s family have been involved in the issue of landslip and conservation of the creek area with LMCC since the late 1970’s. Caring for the native flora and fauna was, and remains, a priority.
It must be remembered that the land in question was, and remains classified, as Environmental Conservation (Green Belt) otherwise listed as E2 zoned land.
With the application for rezoning of a portion of this land to allow for low density residential dwellings, it’s important to retain as much natural vegetation as possible.
In late 2013, the subdivision of the Cornford block was approved. Even though at the time of purchase a Land Management Plan was in place to protect the flora & fauna of the creek area, the developer decided to as Shaun describes it: ‘cleanse – reap – rip – shred’ the land of its plants & critters the remains of which was raked and hauled to the uppermost borders of the property.
“After the event Council issued a fine. But what’s gone is the past – the integrity of the landscape with all that it contains. Easy to say sorry but it’s more than just a few trees that have gone, ask our First Nation’s People,” Shaun said. For them, history is written in the land, which contain songlines – these are corri-dors or pathways of knowledge. (See Songlines story later in the newsletter).
The application for rezoning now being considered by LMCC includes a waterflow section off Daydawn Ave, the lower slopes of Rayford Street, Peachwood Close and an area beyond the end of Winterlake Road.
Shaun continues: “The fresh spring waters are of particular concern, which cannot be separated from respect for land, creatures and culture of which we are the current carers, as East Munibung Hill people.
“We think it’s very important to maintain open access to the creek and to require access to the ridge areas for all our people, especially those with disabilities,” said Shaun. (From MMM Issue #15, December 2020)