Partnership delivers great result for Undercliffe Reserve Freshwater
The stunning views at Undercliffe Reserve in Freshwater have been restored with a little help from some local friends.
For the past two years a Friends of Freshwater Bushcare volunteer group has been working to regenerate and stabilise the local environment in the area, contributing more than 500 hours of their time to the cause.
Founding member Peter Harley said the results of their work had not been lost on local residents and visitors alike.
“There is a great appreciation for our work among local beach goers,” he said. One such local beach goer includes seven-time World Surfing Champion Layne Beachley, who regularly stops on her way for a surf, to compliment the efforts of the group.
“The transformation has been truly remarkable,” Ms Beachley said. “The work of the volunteers means you can now take in the beautiful view on the way down to the beach.” Mr Harley said the group had recently received a grant from Greater Sydney Local Land Services which had helped boost the results.
“We also rely heavily on support and guidance from Northern Beaches Council,” he said.
Greater Sydney Land Services officer, Rebecca Mooy said “ the volunteer effort at the Reserve is obvious when you walk the path from the new stair way. “ Coastal Rosemary, Wattles, and Lomandra planted by the volunteers to increase the shrub layer are a big change from the weedy understory of Asparagus Fern and other weeds that had invaded coastal bushland,” she said. Northern Beaches Council General Manager Environment and Infrastructure Ben Taylor said the iconic beach, within the Manly – Freshwater World Surfing Reserve, is a highly valued part of the northern beaches coastline and is a focus for council’s volunteers who also stabilised the sand dunes to reduce the impact of coastal erosion.
“A mountain of invasive weeds has been removed, native plantings re-introduced and the general environment of this much-loved location greatly improved for everyone to enjoy,” he said.
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FRESHWATER COASTAL SPACE MASTER PLAN
Local residents and various organisations are being invited to join a Master Plan Project Team to scope and generate policy directions on the use of public areas around Freshwater Beach. When finalised, the Coastal Space Master Plan will be put to the newly elected Northern Beaches Council in September 2017 for approval.
The Plan will encompass improvements for Freshwater View Estate; Undercliffe Reserve; Freshwater Beach Reserve; and the McKillop Park coastal strip from Lumsdaine Drive, South Curl, to the northern end of Freshwater Beach at Ocean View Road. Much of these Reserves have long been in need of upgrading and improvements. Friends of Freshie has continually argued that the missing boardwalk link from South Curl Curl to Freshwater Pool and the beach needs to be finally constructed. As a prelude, Council and volunteers, including Bushlink disabled workers, have done excellent work in returning the McKillop Park coastal strip to its heathland natural state.
The two children’s’ playgrounds in the Beach Reserve need to be upgraded as they haven’t had maintenance upgrades for twenty years. Heritage-listed Freshwater View Reserve, the scene of 4 deaths at Secret Rock in the last five years, needs a plan of Management and nearby Undercliffe Reserve, also needs substantial bush care to bring it back to its natural state.
The Plan does not involve consideration of the dunes.
The Friends of Freshwater has been allocated two positions on this Project Team.
REAL PROGRESS ON WEED ERADICATION AT UNDERCLIFFE RESERVE
A volunteer group generated by Friends of Freshie and professionally supervised by Northern Beaches Council has been working for the last two years on removing weed infestation from Freshwater’s southern headland.
With 480 hours of volunteer work already provided by local residents, we are starting to make real progress and stabilising areas that were dominated by weeds. Where once spectacular views of the Beach were impeded by lantana and morning glory, now native plants are returning.
If anyone would like to join us in our project, you would be most welcome. We work on a fortnightly basis for 2 hours, every second Thursday, and our next session is on Thursday 16 March from 1pm.