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Published Friday 26 June 2020
Tags:General, Environment, Media Release

Safety works at Avenue of Honour, Wallan

Four trees from Wallan’s Avenue of Honour will be replaced to ensure the safety of park users and drivers in the nearby vicinity.

The works are due to begin on 13 July.

Council is regularly inspecting the condition of the trees which were originally planted in the 1920s to commemorate local servicemen who served in World War 1.

The four trees identified along High Street will be replaced by four-metre tall trees propagated from the budwood of the existing 53 trees.

The replacement trees were grown at Mt William Advanced Tree Nursery to ensure the consistency and authenticity of the avenue is maintained. These re-grown trees are now ready for planting.

Council will plant the replacement trees on 20 July – the 104th anniversary of the Battle of Fromelles with a small ceremony – pending COVID-19 restrictions.

During the Battle more than 5500 Australians gave the ultimate sacrifice. This is believed to be the greatest loss by a single division in 24 hours during the entire First World War.

Council’s replacement program is to ensure that trees are removed and replaced without disturbing the historical significance of the avenue as well as reducing the risk of potential injury or damage to the wider community.

The Wallan Avenue of Honour is a significant sight as far as Victorian War Memorials go as it is the only known avenue with Ulmus x Hollandica Purpurascens trees. There are isolated plantings of this species in St Kilda Rd, Gisborne and the Kyneton and Benalla botanical gardens.

Council will monitor the trees over several years and it is anticipated all the trees will be replaced over time to ensure the Avenue of Honour is a safe memorial to Australia’s military history.

A tree with a temporary fix until it can be replaced.
A tree with a temporary fix until it can be replaced.

Comments from Mayor David Lowe

“With such a high volume of both on road and off-road traffic in Wallan, the safety of residents and visitors to the Wallan Avenue of Honour is our top priority,” he said.

“It is great to be able to replace the four trees with a clone as it will maintain the integrity of this historically significant site. We’re thankful to the Mt William Advanced Tree Nursery for growing the replacement trees.

“We urge people walking through the area to remain cautious when workers are removing the trees and to listen to their advice.”

This page was last updated on 1 July 2020.