|24 September 2018
With fascinating inscriptions on decomposing headstones and a slice of West Coast history our Pioneer Cemeteries have been put in the spotlight.
The construction of the Tullah Pioneer Cemetery pathway has now been completed, the Queenstown Pioneer Cemetery has received some upgrades and the Zeehan Men’s Shed have received in-kind support from Council to assist with maintenance (grounds) and gorse removal amongst other things.
After approval of a licence to access the pioneer cemetery at Tullah and negotiations with Crown Land the area will be maintained for public accessibility into the future.
Mayor, Phil Vickers welcomed this access change and thanked all those who were involved in negotiations.
“Ensuring the Tullah community and extended visitors continue to have access to the Pioneer Cemetery is an important drawcard to the West Coast,” Mayor Vickers said.
“Our cemeteries are an extremely important part of our community’s history and the ever-increasing trends to understand family and friends past histories,” he said.
Zeehan Men’s Shed contacted Council with the idea to assist with maintenance of the Zeehan Pioneer Cemetery. A Memorandum of Understanding is now in place and the proactive community group will receive in-kind support to beautify and maintain the Zeehan Pioneer cemetery.
Men’s Shed President, Stephen Youd approached Council with the idea a number of months ago. Work at the cemetery has recently commenced.
“Our objective is to remove weeds and brush from the cemetery in a controlled and safe manner while minimising damage to the existing graves and headstones,” he said.
“We are thankful to have access to and use of Council equipment to ensure the Pioneer Cemetery is better accessible for our community, their families and friends into the future,” Mr Youd said.
Council is considering future cemetery management plans, including signage, available space and the potential for burial information to be added to the online database. These and other factors will form part of a study Council has budgeted for in 2017-2018 financial year. The Council has also budgeted $10,000 in its Capital Works Program for improvements to the monumental section of the Queenstown Cemetery. This will involve removal of grass, water main renewal, covering of open drains and installation of gravel as a continuation of works already completed.