Mar 26

Did they get away with it?

An open letter from Brown Hill resident Colleen Filippa:

This is Hill View Road a year ago…

Now, I don’t mind progress and I consider myself to be progressive – but this year has made me realise that unless we all keep our eyes open and get a little more proactive or money making developers are going to walk all over us.

Out in Brown Hill on Hill View Rd there is a huge subdivision taking place. I don’t know how many houses and I can’t seem to get any one to return my calls from the Planning Department at the City Council. As a result the Shetland ponies have gone -no tears there, the willows have been cut down – no tears there, and it looks like 40 houses are going to be built on the paddock – a few tears there.

But why cut down every single Swamp Gum that was planted along Hill View Road. There must have been at least 30 on the eastern side of the road (on the road side of the fence). These Gums were well planted years ago by some-one who knew their trees – this area (which is down near the Warrawee) is really damp and boggy and those tree roots would have sucked up the ground water as well as stabilized the soil. Not only that, they gave habitat to the local wildlife and helped to keep our waterways clean.

Where do these moonscapers ‘get off’ deciding that our trees must go? What right do they have to simply cut them down with no regard to their age and usefulness? Did they think we wouldn’t notice? This environmental vandalism needs to be addressed and our City Council needs to step up and look after our native heritage.

Colleen Filippa


  1. Alison Brown says:

    Wow, We recently bought in Albert park Estate and the last time I was up there I mentioned to my partner that I wish there were more trees. I had no clue it used to look like that before. Why would they cut all of those trees down? Its not actually doing anything in regards to looks.

    One of the first things we will be doing is planting some trees.

  2. Louise says:

    take a look at the Orchard Estate website; if you thought there were 40 odd houses going in…think again! More like 60! “Semi Secluded living”…except your neighbours will be sleeping in your backyard.

  3. Diane says:

    Those before and after photos are tragic. So disrespectful. Why is this allowed to happen?

  4. BE Network says:

    Thanks RH,

    Colleen has now sent us some after shots, see the post above.
    Looks so raw and too clean… so devoid of life

  5. Diane says:

    Our family would not have moved to Ballarat had it not been for the beautiful, green, inviting entrance to Ballarat comprising of Brown Hill and Ballarat East. I hope the powers that be realize the value of this beautiful area of Ballarat.

  6. Diane says:

    I was at the Coorabin Estate today in Brown Hill and the magnificent gum tree which is the centrepiece of the estate appears to have died. This is such a loss for this estate and I hope it is replaced. What was done to this tree to cause this? I think this should be investigated. It has lived through droughts before. I hope the residents of the estate realize the value of that tree.

  7. RH says:

    Indeed. Take some ‘after photos’ for goodness sake!
    They are doing the same thing in Mt Clear/Canadian.
    Just slowing eating away at the forest/bush on the edge of ballarat, despite locals protesting via council and VCAT. The trees are considered insignificant, and developers promise to plant more and provide minimal or NO open space in these developements.
    The kangaroos in that area have such little habitat left anway with the monoculture bluegum forest being recently cut down. Where do they go?
    Go to Google Earth and get some snapshots of the last remaining bush on the outskirts of Ballarat – then realise that it is from 2006 and the developers have GOUGED even more native vegetation since the sattelite photos were taken.
    I realize there has to be increased housing, but at what cost to future generations?

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