Students from Allanson Primary School have lent a helping hand in the last stage of rehabilitation works at Black Diamond.
The students planted over 700 seedlings at the site last Friday, wrapping up works on the site funded under the Department of Mines and Petroleum’s abandoned mines program.
Department of Mines and Petroleum (DMP) Manager Environmental Reform Sarah Bellamy said the idea of the planting project was to improve the visual amenity of the area, promote community connection with the site, reduce levels of erosion and conserve the biodiversity of the area.
“The key things that the community really wanted to be dealt with (at Black Diamond) were the safety issues, particularly associated with the wall, and some of the water quality, erosion, and environmental issues,” she said.
“Once the vegetation takes off it will look beautiful and it will be safe. “From here the community can decide what they want this site to be in the future.”
Ms Bellamy said, since the works have been undertaken at the site, the community had notice less anti-social behaviour in the area.
“Now, it’s more families, people walking their dog, or people just coming down to have a look at this really beautiful area,” she said.
Collie Preston MLA Mick Murray said, now that safety issues have been addressed at the site, he hoped Black Diamond could be promoted as a tourism destination.
“I think one of the next phases is to look at what we can put here in terms of toilets, it wouldn’t be the biggest camping area around, maybe a one or two day limit to people camping here,” he said.
“I am hopeful that in the future there will be a walk trail that will come from Collie to here and go out to the weir and back to Collie.
But it’s also working out a plan to get them into town to spend their dollars.”
Mr Murray said he hoped the community would look after the area following the amount of work that had been undertaken.
“I think the important part from now on is that people respect the work that is being done out here, that includes not dumping rubbish, don’t camp on the sites that have been rehabilitated, and looking after it into the future, otherwise it’s been a waste of time,” he said.
Black Diamond Working Group member Leonie Scoffern said she was grateful to the Department of Mines and Petroleum for inviting the school students to help with the last stage of the project.