On reading the Blue Wrens Subcommittee report which described the trials and tribulations of the Ferry Road Bushcare Group working to enhance blue wren habitat in the William Carlton Gardens, a Glebe Society member who lives adjacent to the Gardens contacted the Society. She wanted to share with members what she and other locals have also been doing to protect and improve the vegetation and habitat in the Gardens.

William Carlton Gardens fronts residential properties (left) (image: V. Simpson-Young)

William Carlton Gardens were established in 2002 when the land occupied by John Maloy’s carting firm was sold for residential development. The Council required dedication of the land at the top of the cliff for open space and a walkway to access waterfront parklands from Glebe Point Rd, and also to open views along the Light Rail corridor to Wentworth Park and the head of Blackwattle Bay1. Being on a steep slope down to Blackwattle Bay, the Gardens provide a delightfully varied habitat for many species of animals and plants; not to mention challenges for the Council’s contractors, Citiwide, which perhaps over-zealously, recently cleared vegetation that was habitat for small birds.

For many years, a group of local residents have been concerned about the rubbish (bottles and plastic etc) and overgrown weeds that have been accumulating in the Gardens, and have been quite dissatisfied by Council’s efforts to redress this. The Gardens include a beautiful sandstone paved viewing platform from which the public can take in excellent views of Blackwattle Bay and the city beyond. For some time, local residents have been urging the Council to keep this view clear of vegetation so that it can be enjoyed by all, as was originally intended. In December last year, Council lopped the lower branches of the trees that obscured the view from the platform, while at the same time removing vegetation from the cliff-face.

Local residents are appreciative of the efforts of the Ferry Road Bushcare group and other volunteers in nurturing the Gardens; in fact residents from the apartment block at 42 Lombard Street have contributed $1,000 to new plantings undertaken by volunteers.

Such care and commitment to their local green space by the supporters of William Carlton Gardens – whether our members living adjacent or the Ferry Road Bushcare Group – is essential if we are to protect and improve Glebe’s natural environment.

1.William Carlton Gardens is a stop on the ‘Pocket Parks of Glebe’ Walk. (https://glebewalks.com.au/?tb_walk_stop=william-carlton-gardens). The description of the history of the Gardens is taken from this page.