The Hepburn Shire has again been successful in securing funding from the Victorian Government’s Safer Together Firewise Program to continue removing woody weeds from the bush surrounding Lake Daylesford to help reduce fire risk.

The aim of the project is to remove woody weeds like Gorse, English Broom and Pine wildings from the native vegetation in and around the Central Springs area.

The project began last year and has secured further funding to continue with the gains that were made by revisiting the treated areas and extending some works into zones that present a high weed-fuel load.  Many agencies have been involved in the program planning including CFA, DELWP, and the Hepburn Shire Council.

“The project has a fuel load focus, but in targeting the woody weeds, it will also have environmental outcomes” said Brian Bainbridge, Project Leader and Biodiversity Officer for the Hepburn Shire.

“This funding refresh affords us the ability to make a concentrated effort at weed control in some old-growth areas that pose a fire risk. This year’s funding of $44,500 adds a considerable amount to the Council’s existing weed control budget.  It’s a great opportunity.”

Mr Bainbridge is keen to see the “Green Climber” machine at work – it can slash remotely on steep or hill country. “It’s innovative technology that means we can safely slash weeds that would be otherwise hard to access.”

Some of the Friends of Lake Daylesford went for a walk to see the works in progress.  “It is encouraging to see this important work being done and we are keen for more people to understand our community fire risk,” said Mary-Faeth Chenery from Friends of Lake Daylesford. “The more people who understand that we live with fire risk and that we can do things together to manage it, the safer we will be”.

Bridget Clarke, Project Officer for the Safer Together Community Based Bushfire Management Program, will be running community information sessions on Wednesday mornings for the next few weeks at the Central Springs Car Park.  For those interested in attending please call Bridget on 0476 330 700.