Photographs by Harry Whaite 1912 - 2011

 

 

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Ray Else-Mitchell

Springwood resident Ray Else-Mitchell loved the magnificent Blue Gums across the street from his home, and was shocked, one day in the early 1950s, to find the land owner showing logging contractors around the property. Determined to save the trees, he donated enough money to Council to purchase the blocks of the land for a public park. A neighbouring landowner, Mr Miller, donated part of his property, and Else- Mitchell Park was created.
Development of the Springwood industrial estate in the 1970s resulted in the loss of a large area of Blue Gum Forest on part of 40 ha granted to explorer William Lawson in 1834. In 1978, when a townhouse development was planned for the last 13 hectares of this patch, concerned members of the community pointed out the site’s considerable ecological and historical significance, and extraordinary natural beauty. Council eventually purchased the land to preserve the forest: this became Deanei Reserve