Sport Fields Riverwalk

Bangalow Sports Fields Riverwalk

This area began as the Olympic Site due to a grant given by the 2000 Olympic Committee to towns where the torch was passing through. It has evolved into the Bangalow Sports Fields Riverwalk after a grant was awarded in conjunction with the Sports association to develop the playing fields and finish plant the creek area surrounding it.

Early days (2000):

Situated along Byron Creek at the rear of the sports fields with a grant of $2,000 from the Olympic Landcare Scheme. Over 2,500 trees were planted and mulched involving a large community effort. Ten sporting & community groups were represented on the day. The area planted is 5 meters wide and follows the creek bank for 200meters. Planting was done in rows that had been ripped to allow for easier large scale planting. All of the 2,500 trees were planted on the day. This has been a mixed blessing as keeping up the weeding on such a large number of plants is very difficult. After spraying the site for 2 years we found this only encouraged more weeds to grow in the bare soil. We now brush cut and grass is becoming established.

Half the original planting was lost due to frost, drought and weeds. We have since replanted most of the area with the help of a Work for the Dole participant. Ongoing maintenance requires some further camphor poisoning and replacement planting.

Recent work (2008):

Work began in 2008 to extend the planting of Byron Creek to the highway in the east from the already started area at Snow’s Bridge. The planting in total is 1.3km long and varies from 10 to 25m wide, the original planting being widened. Planting began with a big community planting day on which several thousand trees were planted along the length of the area. Many local groups were represented as well as all ages from the community, it was raining and we all ended up gloriously muddy. Losses have been replaced on landcare working days with the aid of community groups such as the Scouts. Regular maintenance is carried out by members of the local landcare group but also a hired mowing contractor and more recently an indigenous regeneration team.

Bangalow School children as part of and Environment unit have also had a hand in this work.
A small wetland is one of the aspects of this planting, in the southwest corner. This 2 stage wetland filters water coming off the sport field, road and car park making sure contaminants do not reach the creek. A concrete path was the final touch between the regeneration work and the new playing fields. This has given access to the area to all of the community and is being well used. The new sports fields were opened in 2009 but work will continue on the regeneration side for some years.

Photo History

2000 – Community Planting, 2008 – Community Planting, Works 2009 – 2010

The future:

Work is under way by the indigenous regeneration team on clearing weeds on the lower creek bank in preparation for the next phase of planting. The team has been made possible by the support of Rainforest Rescue whom have also donated funds for a further 1000 trees to be planted on this bank.

Work will continue along this stretch of the creek until it is restored to its original vegetation. It is hoped that in time both sides of the creek can be re vegetated.