1989 (Oct) - Pre 1992: Fairy Dell Society Bushcare

How Fairy Dell Bushcare started in 1991:

By Diane

I joined the Fairy Dell bushcare group in 1997. John King, Gisela Chifley and John Melville were there from the original group.  My memory is that it was started by a woman named Christine who lived just over from the silt ponds. She and Thelma Murphy and the two John’s fund raised (cake stalls) in Springwood in order to start cleaning up what had become an overgrown eyesore.

What were the challenges you were faced with:

Together they lobbied government and applied for grants and worked to bring Fairy Dell back to what it had once been. Christine’s place at the seat of the picnic table walk was planted with native violets in her memory. John Melville worked for Sydney Water and was able to obtain the shed used to house all their tools. John King had been a volunteer ranger and built many tracks in the mountains. He helped source the picnic tables. They all worked very hard to bring it back to a place that the community could use.
The initial work was without council funding. In the many years that I volunteered we have had many bushcare officers and volunteers. Tracy has been there the longest.

A lot has happened:

When I joined there was a huge problem with trad. Where the ferns are now by the picnic tables was thick with it. We used to rake it up and roll it like a carpet.
Until the abandoned scout hall was demolished we had problems with vandalism and damage to both tables and plants. The volunteers worked with Thelma to lobby the council and get the hall removed. We have had a number of high school students over the years do their Duke of Edinburgh awards with us.

newspaper clipping of volunteers asking for help

The newspaper cutting that Dianne joined the group after reading

What are your challenges and goals now.

A lot has changed over the years. The weeds and wildlife that we see has changed as the climate has. I’ve met and enjoyed the company of many lovely like minded people.
I no longer volunteer as family commitments get in the way.
I have attached an article from the Gazette that started me volunteering at Fairy Dell. All other photos that I had I already put on the website. John King is the font of all Fairy dell knowledge.

More information about this group can be found on their website: https://fairydell.bushcarebluemountains.org.au/

Bushcare Blue Mountains