First Workshop a Success

The first workshop hosted on 24 June by Sustaining the Williams Valley, Our River and Rainforest, proved a huge success. With around 70 people in attendance, people were treated to three exceptional presentations, an excellent lunch, and a visit to Fosterton Road to see riverside restoration in-situ.

The first speaker, noted environmentalist and philosopher Glenn Albrecht, recounted the words that he has come up with to describe people who love different aspects of place and nature. Glenn is known for coining the term ‘solastalgia’, the feelings of sadness or distress caused by environmental change, and he was able to elaborate extensively on this in terms of how people react to negative environment impacts around them.

Up second was Skye Moore from Local Land Services Hunter, with a fascinating presentation on the history of impacts on the Williams River since the arrival of Europeans. And thirdly was forest expert Alex King, who described many of the various trees that naturally occur in our district, and led the on-site visit following lunch.

Our thanks to our three presenters, the Settlers Arms for the great food, and to everyone who gave up their Saturday to attend.

Our River and Rainforest Free Workshop

Come along to a free workshop to hear:

  • Glenn Albrecht: Renowned environmental speaker and
    local bird enthusiast who will be inspiring us about our
    local flora & fauna
  • Skye Moore, environmentalist, will talk about the Williams
    River past and present and river corridor projects in the
    upper catchment.

Then come with us to visit a local resident’s unique
rainforest planting along the Williams River to look at 15
years of riverbank restoration work and listen to:

  • Alex King, rainforest specialist, will talk about rainforest
    restoration and its importance as habitat.

When: Saturday 24 June, 10am–3.30pm
Where: Dungog Festival Lounge, 224 Dowling St, Dungog,
followed by site visit near Frank Robinson Park,
Stroud Hill Rd, Dungog.
Cost: Free (and lunch provided)

Bookings essential: Register at EventBrite
Or contact Judy: 0411 258257

Moving forward!

Following a hugely successful second working bee on Sunday 19 February (you can read about it in the Dungog Chronicle here at http://www.dungogchronicle.com.au/story/4482713/working-bees-paying-off-photos/?cs=12) the details of the third working bee have been announced.

It will be at Frank Robinson Park Sunday March 26th for an 8.30 am start. And don’t be daunted, works stops around 11am for a free sausage sizzle. All ages welcomes, kids especially have a great time.

The first working bee

The first Sustaining the Williams Valley working bee on Sunday 15th January was a great success. A solid group of twenty plus turned up to give their time and energy beginning the process of restoring the Williams River and focusing favourite spot for people in Dungog – Frank Robinson Park.

The work involved weed clearing to get ready for new planting to compliment a new designated RV area that Dungog Council is planning.  While the workers enjoyed a sausage sizzle, local business man Jim Olsen spoke to the group about his memories of growing up in Dungog when the park was a popular swimming spot with a diving board and even lights at night.

 

A new voice for the Williams Valley!

While the debate goes on about which council should merge with which, what will happen to rates, will the roads get fixed, and how to attract more investment into Dungog Shire, the Williams River continues to flow from the Barrington Tops, through Dungog and Clarence Town, and on to the confluence with the Hunter River at Raymond Terrace. Few would disagree with the importance the Williams River plays in our region.

Sustaining the Williams Valley (SWV) is a new community group focused on one of our most taken for granted natural assets – the Williams River. This is an independent group of people with one aim – to work on behalf of the interests of the river and valley. We see the need for maintenance and encouragement of the natural cycle, to allow locals and visitors alike to enjoy the river, and for the natural life of the river, the animals, insects and plants, to thrive.

Working under the principles of sustainability and active community involvement, the group presents as an incorporated association, and will be seeking funding to support activities undertaken. A minimal membership charge allows members to be covered by insurance. Member input is not only encouraged, it is vital to the developing of new ideas and strategies to support the aims of the group and improve the environment in our valley. The group will seek to work with schools, with the community, with businesses, local government and government organisations, every stakeholder that has an interest in maintaining the valley.

Over the coming months the group plans to introduce activities that benefit the river and the community, repairing and restoring areas of river bank that have been damaged through natural and human events.

The first of these is to work on the river bank at Frank Robinson Park. The group aims to rehabilitate the area, clearing debris and introduced plants, planting trees native to the area and environment, and perhaps installing some new equipment.

Watch this space for further updates!