In an extended process that farm was purchased by Frankston City Council around 7 years ago to be added as an extension to the Ramsar Listed Wetlands. This was as a result of a grant given to Frankston Council by the former Dandenong Valley Water Authority in the early 1990's. After the purchase the Friends of Edithvale-Seaford Wetlands, who pushed hard for the purchase in 2004 and 2005, suggested to Council that the area around the former house site might be appropriate for use by other local groups for activities, such as an education centre combining the wetlands, Indigeous history and native flora and fauna, and - given the farming history of the site - a possible community garden around the former house site.
In part because of this suggestion by the friends, when Council came to prepare the master plan for the site, Council invited a number of groups who had expressed interest to a series of meetings to discuss various proposals. These proposals, and on-going discussions, have included: a Wildlife hospital (by Animalia), a sustainable farming demonstration site, an Indigenous education centre, a native plant and food walk, as well as the wetlands education centre.
These discussions, have been ongoing for some years now (and well beyond the formal council organised meetings). A wide range of groups have participated in or contributed to those discussions including representatives of Frankston Environmental Network, Frankston Food Access Network, Friends of Edithvale-Seaford Wetland, Melbourne Water and Birdlife Australia. These groups are now at a stage where proposals are being presented to the public in a public meeting. The details of that meeting are as follows, and interested members of the public (and Council) are invited:
Thursday, June 26 2014,
Seaford Community Centre Meeting Room
(flyer attached below)
Representatives from the different groups will be talking at this meeting about the proposals for the area around the house site of the former Down's Farm (approximately 3 hectares of the 20 hectare site).