Friends of Caulfield Park was formed in 2007 to monitor and advise Glen Eira Council on how to best manage Caulfield Park on behalf of all its users.
We acknowledge the Traditional Owners of country throughout Victoria and Australia and pay our respects to them, their culture and their Elders past, present and future.
The Friends have created this site to centralise all information relating to the park. We welcome your suggestions for additions and improvements. This site contains information about activities in the park organised by the Friends, information about the trees in the park and some history of the park.
This is a site for sharing your ideas and your concerns for the park and we welcome your input.
2020 Council Election - a Letter to All Candidates seeking
their support to relocate the Depot
We see that you have nominated to represent Camden Ward.
We, the Friends of Caulfield Park, incorporated in 2007, act on behalf of the community who use and enjoy Caulfield Park. We regularly liaise with Councillors and Officers to ensure the preservation and improvement of Caulfield Park.
Caulfield Park is Crown Land. The Glen Eira Council is the Committee of Management, charged with the administration of Caulfield Park for the benefit of the community in terms of the declared purpose (see below).
We seek a clear understanding of candidates’ attitudes and intentions regarding Caulfield Park, once elected to Council, in particular, in relation to the relocation of the Council Depot. Responses to the questions, listed below, will be incorporated in our Newsletter, distributed to the local community, and will be posted on our website. This will help voters to make an informed decision as to who to vote for on Election Day.
We seek your views and ask what commitment you are prepared to make to urgently rectify this abuse of the original intent for the use of Caulfield Park, and to find ways to speedily return the area occupied by the depot to its declared purpose under the Trust Deed. Never has open space been so valuable for the community; and this value can only expand in the future. To have a large area within the park used as a Council Depot flies in the face of community views and values.
A bit of history.
Caulfield Park was reserved formally as a “site for a Public Park, Gardens, and Public Recreation” by the Governor-in-Council in 1956. In the Eighties, the park was vested “in trust” to the Municipality of Caulfield. In 1995, the administration of this trust was transferred to the Glen Eira Council as part of the city merger program. At this time, Caulfield Council sold its Neerim Road Depot to developers, and its materials and machines were opportunistically transferred to the original Caulfield Park Gardener’s plant nursery, located within Caulfield Park. At the same time, the then-existing children’s day care centre was closed and replaced with offices for Council’s workers. The use of this area for a Council Depot was, and remains, a clear violation of the purposes for which Caulfield Park was reserved (see above).
In the 2000 Caulfield Park Master Plan, and again, in the 2018 refreshed plan, the Depot’s presence was recognised as a temporary usage. However, consistent non-commitment by Council has seen the area being progressively expanded in its range of uses, and vehicular access has greatly expanded. Currently, despite pious aphorisms, relocation of the Council Depot is not a priority, even on the 10-year plan.
The Friends of Caulfield Park have prepared a Vision of what the area currently occupied by the Depot could become.
New 2020 - 2024 Councillors
We congratulate the new Councillors for Camden Ward
We contacted the candidates prior to the election about their support to move the Depot out of the park. We thank the Friends who voted for them after reading their responses on line or in our newsletter.
This is what the successful candidates told us:
Thank you for your email. I have been a resident of Camden Ward for 25 years and lived in Glen Eira for most of my life. I am a regular visitor to Caulfield Park and feel that it is a gem of Camden Ward. Our whole family loves the park and it has been our saviour during COVID and lockdown. My husband and I walk around Caulfield Park several times a week. Our children have grown up in the park, watching the ducks on the lake, playing in the various playgrounds, and playing sports on the ovals.
Given the lack of open space in Glen Eira generally, and especially in Camden Ward, I am absolutely committed to extending our open space and providing the opportunity for more trees and greenery in Camden Ward. If elected, I would work actively to relocate the depot on Inkerman Road, ideally before the next Council election in 2024. I would also actively seek Council and State funding to facilitate both the relocation of the depot and rehabilitation of the depot site. I think it is very important that residents have outdoor places to relax and connect with nature.
In terms of what to do with the freed-up area, I would take that back to the community to seek input. Of course, the input of Friends of Caulfield Park would be a very important part of this. Personally, I love the Depot Plan that FCP has created with the depot offices being repurposed as a meeting space and environmental learning hub, and the new open space being used for things like a children's adventure playground, an art and sculpture garden, and a 'biblical' garden with wonderful food forest plants such olives, pomegranates, and date palms.
"Many thanks for the opportunity to respond to your important questions. As the endorsed Greens Candidate for Camden I fully support not just the maintenance of our existing parks and open green spaces but look forward to increasing them across the City of Glen Eira. I acknowledge that Caulfield and Glenhuntly have the lowest amount of open green space per residents than any other municipality as recently reported in The Age. As a former teacher and now grandparent, I love the idea of creating an Environmental Learning Hub and a children's adventure playground in Caulfield Park. The Greens above all others understand the need for increased tree canopy coverage so any plan to move the current council depot should not be at the expense of either another park or open green space that requires the removal of mature trees. I realise this has been an issue for 20 years now and the situation isn't at all satisfactory. There may be an opportunity to work with Bayside Council for example, as they develop a new depot in the reclaimed Elsternwick Golf Course.
If it is possible to raise the issue of relocating the Depot I would certainly encourage community participation in any decision making. Certainly if the funds were available and an appropriate site became available I would most certainly support such an initiative.
Values with respect to the Park
Caulfield Park is a very large open park space in south-east Melbourne. It provides recreational opportunities for a wide range of users. These include casual users as well as tennis,bowls, soccer, cricket, lacrosse, recreational walking on a surrounding walking track and a leash-free area for dogs. The park contains pavilions, a conservatory, childrens' play areas. and a heritage-listed arboretum for those who simply like to meander through its unstructured, non-enclosed vistas.
Principal Value Statement
The value of Caulfield Park is that of a multi-functional ‘PARK’.
This includes the maintenance of the present diversity of Caulfield Park, together with a balanced respect for the recreational values of all users including all those listed above.
The principal values of Caulfield Park include the retention and maintenance of:
Green space and uninterrupted vistas by ensuring that all future building and parking developments are park-sympathetic, in colour, shape, and location.
Historic and significant artifacts such as the rotunda, conservatory, bronze statues and heritage-listed arboretum at the west of the Park
Sporting amenity including the principle cricket ground, the grassed sports pitches at the east end of the park, and adequate sporting facilities
Children’s play areas
Preservation of the park’s values and options for future generations (employing the precautionary principle – don’t waste what you can’t get back)
Relates to the retention of the existing park ambiance and includes:
Minimal loss of Green Space including:
No further extension of car parking that results in the loss of Green Space.
No further construction of excessively large buildings that encroach on Green Space.
Minimal loss of Vista
No compromise of the uninterrupted soft green views from inside or outside the park by either multi-story or landscape-intrusive buildings
Non-severance of space due to roads crossing the walk path around Caulfield Park
Non-severance of park concept by the inappropriate positioning of large buildings (e.g. across its centre).
FoCP acknowledges the needs of all park user types including:
Recreational Walkers and Dog Walkers
Casual Users from near and far, including those who appreciate the “existence value” of the park in its current form.
Residents of multi-unit developments in the immediate area who rely on the park for outdoor activities (their de-facto backyard)
FCPresists the use of park land in an area recognised as deficient in open space for any new car parks
Management and Amenity
FoCP is concerned about the impacts of:Noise – impact on surrounding residents
Lighting – impact on surrounding residents
People in park at night – safety issues
Existence Values vs. Usage Values
Many people use the park from a large regional catchment. Many others value the existence of this large area of green space even if they do not use it.
This site is prepared and maintained by the Friends of Caulfield Park and is currently undergoing some changes. Our apologies if you cannot locate the information you are after.