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Providing flood mitigation, water quality and vegetation improvement in the Upper Parramatta River Catchment, Sydney, Australia




Images © David Wallace Photography 2006

L-R: Bob Junor, the Aquacade Sisters, Ian Kiernan OA and David Borger
Royal Life Saving Society of Australia NSW State Team with Ian, David, Bob & the Aquacade sisters

On the 3rd December, over a thousand residents celebrated the achievement of bringing the water quality in Lake Parramatta up to swimmable levels.

Though the much anticipated open and competitive swimming events were called off due to the rain storm that happened on Saturday afternoon, the Freshwater Festival held at Lake Parramatta on the 3rd December was a resounding success, with many other activities making the day an enjoyable one.

The Trust's chairman, Bob Junor, and two of its trustees, Pam Smith and Paul Barber (also Deputy Lord Mayor of Parramatta) were at the festivities, as were the Federal member for Parramatta, the Hon. Julie Owen MP, David Borger the Lord Mayor of Parramatta City Council and Clean Up Australia's chairman Ian Kiernan AO. The state life saving team from the Royal Life Saving Society of Australia came to act as the life guards for the day, and a little bit of old fashioned glamour was provided by the Aquacade Sisters.

As the weather was fine, spirits were not dampened by the preceding day's rain, with many other activities to captivate people's interest. For the children there were jumping castles and a tea cup ride, local Scout groups were present, an attempt, organised by one of the day's sponsors, at setting a record for the most people simultaneously playing Totem tennis (also known as swingball) which was achieved (subject to confirmation) with 108 people joining in for 11 minutes and 32 secs.

As swimming can only occur at club managed events, the main patron of the day was Parramatta City Swim Club, who put a lot of effort into the organistation of the Festival, and with approximately 1300 people attending the Festival, even without the swimming, they can consider their time well spent.

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The achievements of individuals, schools and community groups on environmental projects was celebrated at the 2006 Regional Environment Awards on Tuesday 14th June. The Blacktown and District Environment Group took out the Diamond Award and $5000. The overall category winners were: School/Education ($1000): Jasper Road Public School for The Arbors club; Individual ($500 each): Marjorie Mead, Volunteer Coordinator of the Bidwill Community Garden and Sylvia Nuttgens, voluntary environmental activities in the Blacktown LGA; Community Group ($1000): Blacktown and District Environment Group; Best New Starter ($500 each): George Kendall Riverside Park Reserve Committee and the Pendle Hill Bushcare Group.

Click here to see photos of the category winners as well as group council photos. A complete set of photos from the night can also be downloaded from http:\\uprctims.uprct.nsw.gov.au\downloads\felicity\reapics.

The hard work and dedication of the students, teachers and community groups involved in the Waterwatch program was recognised on the 23rd November during the annual Waterwatch harbour cruise. The winners of the Platypus Award for excellence and innovation by a senior Waterwatch group went to Crestwood High, James Ruse High, Girraween High, Catherine McAuley Westmead and Mitchell High. The Water Dragon Award, for excellence and innovation by a junior Waterwatch group went to Matthew Pearce Public, Jasper Road Public and Carlingford West Public. The Turtle Award, for excellence and innovation by a community group, went to Sophia Doyle Bushcare and Pendle Hill Bushcare. The Alan Cupit Award for Educator/Individual Excellence went to: Alan Alison, Geoff Mathew, Krystyna Stead, Jenny Bhatia, Katie Granham, Robyn Lees, David Johnston, Carol Turner, Karen Scanes, Juris Meizis, Rita Kuksal, Gizelle Kazzi, Jeanette Wheildon, Julie Graham, Sylvia Heywood, Max Wehling, Margaret Smith and Gail Cumming. Congratulations and thank you to all of those who have given of their time, to make our Waterwatch program a success.

For information about the 4th Edition of the On-site Stormwater Detention Handbook click here

ATTENTION STUDENTS: Are you doing a GEOGRAPHY or SCIENCE project? Click here to discover fact sheets, maps, photos and activities.

  • Whole catchment information (biodiversity, demographics, geology, geomorphology, hydrology, landuse, rainfall, social history, soil types and vegetation communities)
  • Sub-catchment information (the seven sub-catchments within the Upper Parramatta River catchment)
  • Environmental issues information (biodiversity, ecologically sustainable development, environmental legislation, flooding, impacts of urban development, water sensitive urban design)
  • Curriculum links
  • Field trips including a virtual field trip to the Ganges River, India
  • Geography and Science activities

If you require further information, phone the Trust on 9891 4633.


To find out what has been happening around the catchment lately read the November 2006 issue of Streamline or you can also view back issues

  • Winners of Regional Environment Awards
  • Flood Culvert Opening
  • The Trust's final months
  • Swim for the day at Lake Parramatta

The River Rag

Find out what schools and community groups are up to in the Waterwatch program. The October edition of the River Rag is available now. You can also view previous editions here.

  • Post Trust survival kit
  • Fifteen years of Waterwatch celebrated
  • Farewells

Environmental Education Kit for Secondary Schools

The Trust's Environment Education kit for Secondary Schools been designed to fully comply with curriculum requirements and provide accurate and up-to-date information on local, regional and global environmental issues and solutions. The kit contains 10 information sheets on catchment characteristics, 9 sheets on the sub-catchment, 10 sheets on local environmental issues, 10 field trip guides, 10 Geography activities, 16 Science activities, 18 full-colour maps and curriculum links. The kit also includes a reference book on local plants and animals and a classroom set of specially-printed topographic and air photo maps of the catchment.


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