Constituency Statement: 25th Anniversary of North Sydney’s Bushcare
(North Sydney) (16:01): I rise today to congratulate those in North Sydney’s Bushcare program on a significant milestone—their 25th anniversary. Residents in North Sydney understandably feel passionately about the protection of our local environment. Despite being in the heart of a major global city, our area remains home to some extraordinary areas of bushland. It is the source of constant delight to me that I can be walking through the beautiful forest on Balls Head, for example, and yet know that I’m only a kilometre or so from the centre of Sydney’s CBD.
That we are a home to these precious areas of native vegetation is a credit to the activism of local residents—initially in seeing these areas protected and then, over the last 25 years, through Bushcare supporting their regeneration. It’s not a surprise that Bushcare had its genesis in the work of two Mosman residents in the 1960s, the Bradley sisters. Their movement has gone on to have an impact on native vegetation across Australia. In 1993, North Sydney Council employed bushland specialist Gerard Tuckerman, and from his work the local Bushcare movement as we currently know it was born. Today there are 12 Bushcare sites in the North Sydney Council area, and these are the centre for the activities of our incredibly dedicated Bushcare volunteers. So to all of those who enjoy our bushland reserves, from Badangi Reserve in Wollstonecraft to Forsyth Park in Neutral Bay, we owe a big thanks to the 25 years of work undertaken by so many residents and council staff.