Preserving Bimbowrie for future generations
Volunteers from the Friends of Burra Parks group and staff from Natural Resources Northern and Yorke and South Australian Arid Lands recently ran a working bee at Bimbowrie Conservation Park, in the Olary Ranges.
Natural Resources Northern and Yorke Landscape Ranger Darrin Bennett said a number of Friends of Burra Parks members had been involved in this project for many years, completing a significant amount of restoration work on historical buildings near the homestead, including the old coach house, horse stables, Cobb & Co. post office and Mawson’s Hut.
“The work that has been completed at Bimbowrie by both volunteers and DEWNR staff will help to preserve the integrity of the buildings and provide further protection for many generations to come,” he said.
“The working bee is a great opportunity to build new relationships and to strengthen friendships between staff and Friends of Burra Parks, while learning new techniques and putting existing skills and experience to use.”
At the most recent visit to Bimbowrie, restoration work was carried out on the coach house and horse stables.
Two teams removed hard cement mortar, repointed and lime washed interior and exterior walls on both buildings and re-grouted the original slate floors in the coach house.
Long-time Friends of Burra Parks member Arthur Simpson said the annual working bee provided a chance to gain further experience and learn new skills and was a great opportunity to work with other people.
“Having seen the buildings around six years ago, it is hugely satisfying to see some of the buildings and the state of repair that they are in now,” he said.”
One of the highlights was the delivery of a new lime mixer, which was a joint purchase by Friends of Burra Parks and Friends of Dhilba Guuranda-Innes National Parkand was made possible by a DEWNR On Park Volunteer Support Grant.
“The vertical shaft mortar mixer is the ultimate piece of machinery for mixing mortar,” Mr Simpson said.
The group also held a farewell BBQ for Rodney Rees, the outgoing Natural Resources Northern and Yorke Regional Asset Services Officer.
“We would like to express our gratitude to Rodney for his passion for maintenance and restoration. He has been wonderful to work with over the years; a good leader and teacher,” Mr Simpson said.
For information about the Friends of Burra Parks group and volunteer opportunities in the Northern and Yorke region, contact the Natural Resources Centre at Clare on 8841 3444.