Another Tree Saved

Filed under Environment & Pollution, News ~ by Press on  10 Mar 2019

Halidays Point School Children Swing Into Action To Keep Iconic Moreton Bay Fig Tree .

Edgewater Shores – a developer at Diamond Beach between Old Bar and Forster -  has offered public ownership of a famous local Moreton Bay fig tree.

During consultation, one of the strongest statements came from the adjacent primary school children at Hallidays Point Public School. 

The entire primary school stood strong in front of the tree to demonstrate how important it is to keep the tree available for them and the local community.

When we thought the beautiful Moreton Bay Fig Tree would be lost from the community, we started sending emails, attending meetings and creating Facebook pages to gain community support,” said Mel Orchard, P&C President of Hallidays Point Public School and long-time resident of Diamond Beach.

With our Principal’s backing, we brought the entire school outside to stand in front of the tree. Many of the students were saying “please save our tree.”.

Mr Orchard said it’s a wonderful community that is supportive and helpful. He is delighted that the tree and surrounding park will remain in the hands of the community.

On the original approved plan the fig tree was contained within someone’s back yard, however after hearing how much the tree meant to the community, we removed the entire block from being sold,” said Sam Coco, Development Director for Edgewater Shores.

We started early discussions with MidCoast Council and were positive we could find a way to transfer the land back to the community.”

There were a number of factors considered when assessing the proposal to transfer the land, including the health of the tree and the benefit in retaining such a significant landmark for the local community, Council’s Acting Director of Planning and Natural Systems, Paul De Szell explained.

“Council had received comment from the general public, including representatives from the neighbouring school asking for the land to be placed into public ownership for the benefit of the community.”

Edgewater Shores will work with local community groups to ensure the fig tree area is landscaped to maximise the amenity of the area for the local school children and broader community. Mr Coco expects Stages 1 and 2 of the development adjacent to the fig tree to be completed late March 2019 at which time the newly created fig tree park will also be nearing completion.

Mr Coco said his team had several environmental initiatives on the site, one of which will result in the restoration of over 4000 plant species in a dedicated environmental conservation area. 

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