Save The Historic Bunbury Street Trees

Save The Historic Bunbury Street Trees

1 August 2022
Petition to
Celia Haddock (Chief Executive Officer, Maribyrnong City Council) and
Signatures: 746Next goal: 1,000
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Why this petition matters

Bunbury Street in Footscray is recognised as one of the first streets to be established along the Maribyrnong River. The street, including the original trees planted in the early 20th century, and many of the original Victorian homes, are rightfully designated as a heritage listed.

It comes as a shock, and a travesty then, that Maribyrnong City Council is removing twelve of these original Elm and Ash trees on Bunbury St, starting this first week of August, with little-to-no warning or any consultation with the community. 

We are devastated. 

These trees are an important part of our neighbourhood. They do more than provide shade, colour and a habitat for wildlife – they are as much a character in Footscray’s story as the people who have called it home, and are among the last remaining, living landmarks of the Old Footscray Township. 

Maribyrnong Council has been undertaking "consultation" for some years with a view to “improve” the streetscape of historic Bunbury Street, all the while periodically chopping down the very same trees that make the street so special.

Late on Wednesday 27 July, Council notified a handful of residents by letter about their decision to remove the trees five days later, because of 'poor health and risk to public safety.'

On Thursday 28, by request from community members, Council released a report which spoke to the impact of a concept plan for Bunbury Street (that Council has prepared but not released) and, surprisingly, the report noted that all the trees would need to be removed.

Maribyrnong Council is dismantling a foundational Melbourne street, and they’re doing it without community engagement, and with little transparency. This is governance by stealth and we cannot allow it to continue. 

Given they are almost 100 years old, we know these trees need to be looked after carefully, but we also know that not every ageing tree deserves a death sentence.

Please sign the petition to let Maribyrnong Council know that we, the community:

  1. Demand the proposed removal of trees along Bunbury Street stop immediately;
  2. Demand a full, honest, transparent and clear explanation of why other maintenance options haven't been considered; and
  3. Demand a clear, inclusive, careful and consultative plan be developed with the community about the future of Bunbury Street before any further changes are made.

Chopping down trees isn't good enough. Denuding our community isn't cool. Converting historic avenues to unkempt grass is disrespectful.

No more chopping - lots more explaining - and together we decide.

Support now
Signatures: 746Next goal: 1,000
Support now