Hyde Park Paperbark Tree Plantings Investigation

17/05/2021 - Hyde Park Paperbark Tree Plantings Investigation

Moved by Councillor Forster, seconded by Councillor Miller –

It is resolved that:

(A)        Council note:

(i)          four paperbark trees, planted in a diamond formation, are located in Hyde Park South between the ANZAC War Memorial and the intersection of College and Liverpool Streets;

(ii)         aerial photos of Hyde Park supplied by the Head of Horticulture at the Royal Botanic Gardens Trust indicate they were planted in the early 1950s;

(iii)        the location and formation of the plantings indicate a traditional Aboriginal signpost, a marker used throughout NSW to identify an Aboriginal burial site or monument; and

(iv)       according to the City of Sydney’s historian, no planting books or works orders exist in the City’s archives for the landscaping and maintenance of Hyde Park covering this period and therefore the history of these trees and any commemorative associations is unknown at this time; and

(B)        the Chief Executive Officer be requested to:

(i)          liaise with Heritage NSW, the Aboriginal Heritage Office, the History Council of NSW and any other relevant historical society to investigate the planting and significance of the four paperbark trees in Hyde Park South;

(ii)         report back to Councillors, via a CEO Update, details of the investigation; and

(i)          if the paperbark trees are considered to be culturally significant, update the City’s significant tree registry to reflect this and investigate the possible installation of a permanent plaque outlining and acknowledging their significance.

Carried unanimously.