Restoration work continues at Wilson Park, Lawson

Wilson Park

Work to repair, restore and protect the historic water features, bridge and map of Australia at Wilson Park, Lawson, continues following heavy rainfalls across the Blue Mountains over recent months.

Restoration work commenced at the park in September 2021 but has been heavily affected by sustained wet weather conditions, as well of the impact of COVID-19 on staff availability.

Being delivered under Council’s Cultural Heritage Rehabilitation Fund, the conservation of Wilson Park’s unique heritage elements is a primary consideration.

Mayor, Councillor Mark Greenhill, thanked the Blue Mountains community for their patience and understanding as work to sensitively restore the water feature continues.

“Council is working to ensure restoration work is not only completed as quickly as possible, but in a way that respects and protects the unique aspects of the park,” Mayor Greenhill said.

“Wilson Park provides a very special mix that makes it such a beautiful open space. It’s distinctive water features and rare historical elements need to be carefully conserved with long term solutions that will preserve the heritage values of the site into the future.”

A network of water channels, both concrete and sandstone lined, run through the park. The main channel runs from a waterfall down the middle of the park and incorporates two ponds, one circular with a small island, and one containing the iconic island map in the shape of Australia.

A bridge that spans the water channel is currently closed following damage that has been increased by sustained heavy rainfall. It will be repaired and stabilised to ensure safety, while retaining its heritage character using existing, appropriate materials.

Despite the wet weather, restoration work has been progressing from the waterfall, down the water channels, with work on the bridge and map of Australia to commence shortly.

“The map of Australia is an exceptional and rare remaining example of large-scale concrete maps that were popular in the 1930s. Council will be repairing damage to the facia of the map, clearing out the vegetation and silt from the pond, and investigating the conservation of the paints originally used to colour the map,” Mayor Greenhill said.

“Guided by a Conservation Management Plan which outlines how we repair these important historical aspects, these works will preserve the distinctive elements of the park for future generations to enjoy.”

It is anticipated that the restoration works at the park will be completed by the end of July 2022, weather permitting.

Photo: The historic bridge and map at Wilson Park, Lawson, is being restored.

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