History and Further Information

Early History

The Tatura township lies over the original drainage lines of what is known as the East Mosquito depression. This is a natural drainage line, which meets up with the larger Mosquito depression. The placement of Tatura in this spot was presumably a means of allowing drainage of urban stormwater and sullage in the absence of drainage system when Tatura was first created in the 1870’s.

Originally the land that now forms the Park was used for grazing, as an extension of surrounding farmland. In later years other uses included a council burnt rubbish tip, a BMX track and a gravel dump. This resulted in much of the Park being left as wasteland.

In 1983 a small section was developed as park land and the area was named ‘Cussen Park’ in honour of the first Rodney Shire President, Martin Cussen.

Recent History

In 1993, the then Rodney Shire decided to rezone the area that now forms the Park for residential development to solve the problem of the eyesore and generate money for the Council. Numerous objections were received to the proposal from residents in Tatura.

A public meeting was held and overwhelming support from the community was received for the development of a bushland Park on the site. A committee known as the Cussen Park Advisory Committee was formed.

In 1994 a detailed proposal for the Park was prepared with Council funding. The Plan integrated a bushland park with open space and stormwater treatment facility and was adopted by Council. The Plan known as “Future Use and development ofCussenPark”, included a design for the Park and its features and identified an area in the north east of the Park that could be set aside for residential sub-division. A Committee called the “Cussen Park Committee of Management” was formed.

In January 1995 works began on developing the Park to the Plan. Works included working bees and large scale earthmoving to cover open tips, create islands and place structures to allow water levels in the lakes to be manipulated. Considerable “in kind” contributions were made by community members with help from sponsorship by Service organisations, Council and other agencies, eg. Rotary sponsored toilet block and an arboretum developed by Tatura Garden Club.

CP_before+after photos (1MB pdf)

Present

There are various activities held in the park, run by the Cussen Park Advisory Committee, local organisations and the local community. Activities include planting, bird watching, Waterwatch, school and adult education and group functions. The park has enormous potential for education and eco-tourism, which the Committee hopestap into with this development of a website and self-guided tour brochure.

The aims of the park that have been achieved include low maintenance native bushland, including grassland, wildflowers, aquatic plants and understorey to the eucalypts and acacias. The aesthetic potential of the park will be further realized by the construction of a 9 metre tower, for which the committee is seeking sponsorship.

Join the Friends of Cussen Park

The Friends of Cussen Park are a group of people interested in developing and making the best use of Cussen Park’s facilities for enjoyment and education. Bird watching, plant identification, landscape development and exercising are just some of the activities possible.  The Friends also provide support to the committee at planting days, working bees etc. For more information and to join the list please click on Contact Us.

Maps of Cussen Park

CP poster 3

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