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A public consultation is being led by the Office for Recreation and Sport, in collaboration with PIRSA and DEWNR, around the proposal to create a greenway over the Heysen and Mawson trails within the Wirrabara and Bundaleer Forests.

In particular, the wider community and adjoining landowners are being asked for feedback on:

  • using a greenway to protect access to significant trails and associated trail infrastructure
  • the proposed Bundaleer and Wirrabara greenways
  • any other issues, ideas or observations. 

Your comments and the feedback provided through YourSAy will inform the Government’s final decision on the proposal to create a greenway over the Heysen and Mawson trails within the Wirrabara and Bundaleer Forests.

Comments closed

Fiona Porter

12 Jun 2017

The beautiful Bundaleer Forest has always been a special place for myself and my family, plus extended family and friends to enjoy. Through our involvement with playing tennis and cricket for the Bundaleer teams, being members of the Bundaleer Sport & Recreation Association, plus having neighbouring property to the Forest, we have enjoyed all the natural and man-made recreational areas that the Forest has to offer. We are extremely proud of it and show it off to all our visitors. From our Community's response to your proposed Greenways for both Wirrabara and Bundaleer Forests, it seems very clear that there need to be some changes to your proposals. Please include ALL the Bundaleer picnic ground, all scenic points, historical buildings and forest walks, especially our magical Maple Walk (by far the most popular), within the Greenways for all the public to be able to access into perpetuity. Please listen to the people! Thank you

Jill Fulton

12 Jun 2017

Please ensure that there will be no restriction to all those areas in the Bundaleer Forest that the public currently has access to. This forest is the greatest drawcard to the area and deserves to be further developed and promoted for tourists and locals. It must not be forgotten that this area also provided an ideal venue for the wonderful Bundaleer Festival, with its natural amphitheatres and charming forest walks for smaller ensembles. There might well be a revival of this family Festival, but what a tragedy it would be if it had no home.
This is the most interesting, varied and pleasant outdoor recreational area I have found in the mid-north. We can't afford to lose any of it.

Les Yeats

12 Jun 2017

Why would you not keep the facilities? They are already there and only need maintaining. They don't need to be built from scratch. As they are they are a great forest oasis in a cleared area in SAs mid morth


12 Jun 2017

I write to voice my concern regarding the importance of creating the Bundaleer Picnic Ground Precinct as a Recreational Greenway.
The Bundaleer Forest is a very large and beautiful area of historical significance to South Australia.
The importance of commercial forestry is accepted and also important economically to our State.
Surely both ventures can coincide, side-by-side, together?
I sincerely ask that the COMPLETE precinct, being the picnic area, Maqple Walk, Sculpture, scenic walk, entire existing Heysen Trail (including New Campbell Hill lookout) be saved.
Human beings need these precious spaces to re-connect with Nature on a physical, emotional and spiritual level.
So much development around our State has seen the destruction of what is our legacy and history.
Please think very carefully when making decisions which will influence South Australia for generations to come. We have a sacred responsibility now to protect our environment for the future.

Tim Cooper

12 Jun 2017

The community has used the Picnic Ground at Bundaleer for generations for recreation and education. In more recent decades, at the instigation of interested foresters, three walks were established by marking them with posts and interpretive signs. Pamphlets were also distributed which were used by those walking the trails. These walks have been enjoyed by thousands of people since.
Reading the proposal and comparing it with the map you have published reveal errors which need to be fixed, or the intended route will not cover the attractions promised. The routes proposed seem illogical, disjointed and missing some of the real highlights of the area. It appears that the proposal has been poorly researched and considered with little local knowledge applied.
It is clear by the lack of maintenance done during the last several years that the whole reserve has been regarded as forgotten country. It is time for our elected government to recognize the history contained within the reserve and the value of the resource, and then provide for the continued maintenance of, and access to, the Picnic Ground and the three walking trails for future generations to enjoy and learn from. The Bundaleer area should be regarded in the same category as the Torrens Linear Trail, and the various walking tracks to Mount Lofty and not abandoned due to lack of interest or appreciation of the attractions within the reserve from those who are to make the decision.

Malcolm Booth

12 Jun 2017

We live across the road from the Bundaleer Forest on a tiny portion of the original historic Bundaleer Run, the first property settled by the British north of SA’s Broughton River, a massive 200,000 acres, including the Forest, and regarded as some of the best pastoral land in Australia. It was here in the Picnic Ground Precinct that the pioneer explorer, Edward John Eyre, camped on his way north. It was near here that we chose to restore our iconic homestead, the last of the great pastoral homesteads in the mid-North, to its original glory. It is here, at the North Bundaleer Homestead, that many thousands of overseas travellers during the past 15 years have chosen to stay on their journeys to the Flinders Ranges and beyond. They have walked on the Heysen Trail, ridden on the Mawson Trail, strolled along the Maple, Scenic and Sculpture Walks, and have enjoyed some of the great international singers and musicians performing in natural amphitheatre in the Picnic Ground Precinct.

In 2006, I undertook a study commissioned by ForestrySA to investigate ways of attracting both more local people and more visitors from other places to visit the Forest and the Jamestown region. It included the need for a visitor interpretive centre with associated amenities, accommodation facilities, and further development of the picnicking furniture and the existing network of trails, as well as water and electricity reticulation, road works and signage.

For over 140 years, the people of Bundaleer have created, grown and cared for this special iconic place of economic and cultural significance. As the birthplace of Australian forestry, its importance for tourism, education, recreation and heritage is undenied, and its magical beauty and tranquility ever glorious within the rich agricultural hills and valleys around Jamestown.

The Bundaleer Picnic Ground Precinct truly deserves to be declared by the SA Government as a Greenway in its entirety, rather than just a small piece as a token gesture.

Nev Dowling

12 Jun 2017

Like many who have commented here, I too was born in Jamestown and have fond memories of picnics and school excursions and community events. We loved exploring and finding the cork tree. Recently We revisited the forest to attend our nieces wedding which was in the Maple Leaf Walk, most appropriate as she married a Canadian. Please retain community access to this important recreational and historic amenity.


12 Jun 2017

I have been involved with Bundaleer for 35 years during which time I have played tennis at the Progress Association courts and helped maintain them. I also have helped prepare the picnic ground site for all the Bundaleer festivals and was site manager for the last two festivals. My knowledge of the picnic grounds and the historic sites and and walkways is quite intimate. They are synonymous to me with the broader community of Jamestown that I would love to preserve. Bundaleer should be considered the heart of Jamestown and needs to be owned and maintained by the community forever. To do this we need to own the grounds and the historic sites and have the means to maintain them so we can make this unique area available to the general public to enjoy. It would be essential to cover the site and buildings under the Greenways Act so that our community can afford to preserve the area and present it to the public in a way that is sustainable. To loose our community connection to Bundaleer is too sad to contemplate so I am having my say to urge the Government to look favourably at our proposals so this great asset is held by the people of Jamestown and surrounding areas.

Greg Boston

12 Jun 2017

As interim President of the newly formed Bundaleer Forest Community Areas Association, I’m overwhelmed and delighted by the strong support shown by our community, along with past Jamestown residents and numerous visitors either via holidays or festival events. I am also exceedingly pleased and proud to note every comment is supportive of what we are trying to achieve. With just over 300 direct posts to this site, has there ever been such a huge response from the public? (contributors please note the 500 plus comments include responses from government)

This is an absolute mandate from the public.

As a new volunteer organisation we aim to preserve, maintain and improve this historic, beautiful, and vital public asset for us and many future generations. We sincerely hope that government are listening to your voice.

We’re so lucky to have such a committed and enthusiastic community and at the moment the primary aim for us is for government to understand the significance of these areas and our willingness to work with government. Failure to do that would be a completely unjust outcome for the history of South Australia.

Yes, there is money required to insure, manage and maintain the picnic ground, trails and historic buildings, but what we are asking for is a pittance to preserve all of this in perpetuity.

Government, please talk to us.


12 Jun 2017

The Wirrabara Forest precinct should be maintained to highlight the importance of the location of Australia's first forestry nursery and the profusion of tree species from around the world, many untouched by the Bangor fire in 2014. A Greenway linking to the Heysen Trail should be included in the precinct. This would boost the tourist oportunities for Wirrabara and surrounding districts.

Bundaleer Forest reserve should be maintained at least containing all the current various 'walks' in the area. This too has been a tourist attraction for "Things to Do" when staying in our Southern Flinders towns. The current suggestion to cut out many of the walks is vandalism. Would it not be of more value to the community than a few extra hectares added to a farm. I also have concerns with this form of vandalism, removing attractions that were placed there from public donations and hours of effort by volunteers.

I am involved with the Southern Flinders Discovery Centre at Gladstone and the Wirrabara and Bundaleer reserves are a highlight of day trips for visitors coming into the Southern Flinders. These are valuable tourist areas and should be kept for the future. Please re-consider the negative proposals put forward to date.

We need these attractions to add to this, our beautiful part of Australia. We have many visitors, those particularly from the eastern states marvelling at the beautiful countryside, the stone homes and buildings and the outstanding expansive vistas. To take away some of the attractions that make a point of difference and enhance those experiences is, in my opinion, not too wise a move. The longer we can encourage visitors to stay, the better it is for all our businesses. How smart is it to take away what is already there and then search for something else to replace it. Dumb.

Lesley Kulow

12 Jun 2017

Reading through the comments left it seems that all are of the same opinion and that both Bundaleer and Wirrrabara forests are of great significant historic value and should remain open for future generations.
The touring public are often in awe of our local towns having such a wonderful area to enjoy various social activities, family picnic/bbq, weddings etc.
Both of these areas are of great value to the local communities as a resource and brings tourist money into our towns.
It would be a travesty of justice to destroy either of these areas and make them inaccessible to all who wish to visit.

David Briggs

12 Jun 2017

The Bundaleer and Wirrabara forests have highly significant historical and social value to not only the local communities but the wider South Australian community. They are the sites of the first plantation forests in Australia and experimental planting to establish which species would do well in this area. There are still trees remaining from those early plantings. The mid north is an area of great natural beauty but as it is given over to farming the general population has limited access to it. These two forests provide a chance to enjoy that beauty as well as an opportunity to observe the local wildlife. Past generations have been able to enjoy these wonderful natural resources. It would be extremely short sighted and negligent to deny that enjoyment to future generations.

Ann Malone

12 Jun 2017

Bundaleer Forest has had a significant impact on the history of forestry in Australia.
Renowned Conservator of Forests John Ednie Brown’s (1848-1899) first most important work as an author was Forest Flora of SA, a significant section of this book developed due to his work at Bundaleer. Part of his role at Bundaleer was experimentation on appropriate plantation trees for the forestry industry. Established in 1873, the Bundaleer Forest was Australia's first commercial forest. Today’s forest features magnificent century old specimens of oaks, elms and other European species, the results of these experiments. Brown, his colleagues and successor, Walter Gill, selected Pinus radiata and of course that species is one of the main softwood timbers of today.
The Maple walk and arboretum are testimony to his research-and in the picnic ground you can even find a cork tree. The Conservators Hut and Stables are a fitting memorial to this man.
In was at Bundaleer that the concept of planting the tree seeds in short lengths of bamboo was developed and over the years this has evolved into the black plastic tube small tree seedlings found today. Brown had some recognition in this but it was William Curnow, the first nurseryman, who is locally acknowledged for this development. Curnow’s Hut now utilised as overnight accommodation for Heysen and Mawson trail users is a fitting memorial to this man.
My family were part of the original settlement of the Bundaleer Forest area and have been farming in the community since 1894 and maintained a strong commitment to this community for over a hundred years. As part of the Jamestown Centenary I wrote I wrote a booklet, Bundaleer through the ages, that was launched as part of the Bundaleer celebrations. As a young student this research instilled in me a deep pride and commitment to the area.
Much has been said of the beauty and ambience of the forest and its importance not only to the local Jamestown community but, as it is easily accessed on a major highway to the north of the state, many travellers and tourists.
The need to maintain safe environments in our community as well as the historical significance of this part of the state makes it imperative that significant consultation with the local community needs to be made before a final decision on this development is made.
Nothing has been said of the Ngadjuri people who were the first inhabitants of this area, you only need to spend some time in this area to realise that it would have been a significant place for these people.

Leo Hazebroek

12 Jun 2017

Once public assets are sold they are gone forever from public ownership. By excluding previously well used areas of the Bundaleer Forest due to this sale they also will be lost forever. Therefore it is important that the listed areas to be excluded should be added to the Greenway. These are the Picnic Ground Precinct and the surrounding play areas, The Maple and Scenic walks and New Campbell Hill. The Scenic Walk passes by the first forestry plantings in Australia, a historical site talked about in the book “Bundaleer Through the Ages”.
I am also concerned as are the Friends of the Heysen Trail at the Re Routing of the Heysen Trail to become more of a road trail in this area. The most beautiful areas should not be excluded.
I am also wondering of the width of the Greenway trails as The Bundaleer Forest is an area of child exploration. Children should not be restrained to only walk “nicely” but to experience the areas alongside the immediate paths. At what distance will this become a problem if this is sold to a private owner?

dominique schwartz

12 Jun 2017

The Bundaleer Forest is a magical place. My family and I had the pleasure of spending a weekend there during the 2009 Bundaleer Festival. Every walk, historical building, and picnic space is worth keeping, and together the sum is much greater than the parts. The joy it provides is obvious - you need only look at the faces of those who visit. This is an important resource not just for the local community, but for those who visit from interstate and overseas. Please protect it all for future generations.

Kerry Sutter

12 Jun 2017

I am concerned that the State Government is going to shut down our forest. I love going out to the Bundaleer forest with my friends and family to have bonfires. I love using the musical instruments and going on the Maple walk. My favourite thing about the Bundaleer is walking on the Maple walk with my family. The Bundaleer forest is a big part of my family and we recently had our family photos out there. I would be very disappointed to see our forest go so please SAVE OUR FOREST!
From Ruby Sutter

Luke Air

12 Jun 2017

Recently I have been to Jamestown and have been shown through the town and it's sites. I must say the Bundaleer forest in particular the camping area and maple walk is a real highlight. The forest is a great place to go for a hike or take family and friends to spend the day. It would be a real shame to lose this great nature park for both the local community and visitors to the area. I believe losing it would be very detrimental to the local community and it's tourism.

Pat Dowling

12 Jun 2017

I have lived in the Jamestown community since 1952 and my family & I have enjoyed many different functions at the Bundaleer Forest & picnic grounds. Many of our visitors were taken out there to experience it as well. When Mark Oliphant was governor of our state, a special function was held to celebrate the Bundaleer Forest, it having been the first forest established in SA if not Australia. We had great pride in the picnic grounds, the cork tree and the maple walk and it would be very sad if the community ever lost access to our Forest.

Whitney Hamilton

12 Jun 2017

The bundaleer picnic ground needs to be made a greenway, for all areas currently used. This isnt just an area we use for recreational leisure its much more to the community. This picnic ground is the heart and soul of the jamestown area, its not only the history behind being the birthplace of plantation forestry in australia but whats its become today. This greenway would keep the community spirit alive and keep the ongoing tourism coming through our town.

Keith Lavers

12 Jun 2017

It greatly concerns me that public access to natural and heritage bushlands will be further diminished, under the guise of creating a new trail. The total Bundler forestry reserve was 3,300 Ha. It had multiple trails not mentioned in the greenways proposal, such as from the Arboretum picnic grounds to the top of New Campbell Hill, and the iconic Scenic trail,a 4.5 km loop south of the picnic grounds. The proposed additions to the Mawson trail have always been there. The Heyson trail has alternate loop trails from Curnow's hut to north of New Campbell hill, along the quartzite ridge. Each of these trails mentioned had storyboard signs along the way with historical, environmental and geological information. The reserve has been used by horse riding groups, orienteering and rogaining clubs, bikesa family rides, and parts of it for motocross. There is very few places in the mid north where you can go and really be in the bush, with such diverse scenery from sweeping vistas to pine forests. Me, my family and friends enjoyed all that the forestry reserve had to offer during my 18 years in Jamestown, and I would hate to think that future generations could not do the same. At the very least the greenway must include the Scenic walk, the whole of the Maple walk and the whole of the Conservators walk, but I really believe the whole reserve should be retained as a recreation park.

Jacob Noonan

12 Jun 2017

The bundaleer picnic ground and maple walk needs to be made a greenway, for all including areas used for recreational leasure

Anna Grant-Henderson

12 Jun 2017

There is too much excluded from the picnic ground which is important to the community.
Why can't the other areas be included.
Is it so much to ask that the opinions and needs of the local community be honoured.
Rev Dr Anna Grant-Henderson
• Virtually all of the Picnic area
• Most of the Maple Walk (the most popular trail at Bundaleer)
• The main entrance to the Picnic Grounds
• The Musical Sculpture (Ding Dongs) and Postcards Sculpture
• The vast nature-play areas between sculptures south of the Picnic Grounds
• Scenic Walk (the 4km walk south of the Picnic Ground Precinct which includes Australia’s first forestry plantings).
• The entire existing Heysen Trail at
Bundaleer Forest including NewCampbell Hill (the highest point and 360 degree scenic views)
• Conservator’s Walk and Mawson Trail (excellent inclusions)
• All of the Heritage Buildings and the Heritage Nursery (excellent inclusions)
• An attempt to connect the Heysen Trail
with the Picnic Grounds. Good in
principle, but poor result due to zero
community consultation

Marie Fulwood

12 Jun 2017

I am a Jamestown local and look upon the Bundaleer Forest Picnic Grounds and Walking Trails with great pride. I have many happy memories of time spent at the forest grounds for school & sporting club picnics as a child and in later years with my own children and grandchildren. Our daughter was married at the start of the maple walk and overseas visitors were in awe of the beauty of the whole area. It would be so sad not to be able to continue this tradition for future generations. The Forest and it's beautiful picnic ground means so much to our community. It is a vital part of tourism for our town and brings money into our town. The Bundaleer Forest public areas must stay as they are for everyone to enjoy.

Lisa Blanden

12 Jun 2017

A Bundaleer Greenway to secure public access to recreational trails and associated facilities that DOES NOT include Bundaleer Picnic Ground, the area associated by being the start and finish point for four recreational trails with toilet facilities and picnic shelters? That is ridiculous!! What could you possibly be thinking State Government?
Is this just another way to cop out of expense and responsibility for anything north of Gawler? Interesting that millions are being spent on redeveloping creative and adventure trails in the city and yet this authentic nature experience that is Bundaleer Picnic Ground just gets reduced to ridiculously small trail?
Perhaps this was just an accidental omission, surely after two and a half years of hearing from the community how important the Bundaleer picnic ground area is you couldn’t have ignored the community voice?
Come on State Government, the message is loud and clear … The ENTIRE Bundaleer Picnic Ground Precinct needs to be a Greenway!!

Rohan Wundke

12 Jun 2017

I grew up 50 kilometers away from Bundaleer and can ensure you the Bundaleer Picnic Grounds was and is today a popular spot with the whole Mid North community. The only question is will it be tomorrow? Will the government be remembered for embracing it's future or closing the door for future generations? 500 + comments now and not one support the current limited proposal. The full 22Ha must be included in the Greenways act to protect this resource.