Friends of the Gold Coast Regional Botanic Gardens - The Queen's Jubilee Woodland Walk Opening
State Member of Southport, Mr Rob Molhoek MP; Federal Member for Moncrieff, Ms Angie Bell MP; Friends of the Gold Coast Regional Botanic Gardens President, Mr Alex Jakimoff; Friends’ Founder and volunteer Jubilee project coordinator, Ms Kate Heffernan; Secretary, Ms Catherine Simpson; Representative of the Rosser family, who so generously donated this site in 1969, Ms Berryl Rosser; Botanic Gardens Curator, Mr Paul Cockbain; distinguished guests; ladies, gentlemen, boys and girls.
I begin by acknowledging the original custodians of the lands on which we gather and pay my respects to Elders past, present and emerging, and to any First Nations people here today.
I am honoured to be here to officially open The Queen’s Jubilee Woodland Walk.
I have already enjoyed a particularly lovely morning hosting a Community Wellbeing Walk at Government House earlier today, in support of diabetes awareness.
And so, I am doubly blessed to now be here at the Gold Coast Regional Botanic Gardens, spread across a truly impressive and beautiful 31 hectares.
An initiative created to mark Queen Elizabeth the Second’s Platinum Jubilee, The Queen’s Green Canopy gives people the opportunity to plant trees in memoriam to honour the Queen’s remarkable life and service.
In fact, just a couple of weeks ago, on the first anniversary of my swearing in as Governor, we planted our own contribution to The Queen’s Green Canopy at Government House, where I joined staff and volunteers to plant 70 trees in the Estate bushland in honour of the Queen’s 70-year reign.
I commend The Friends of the Gold Coast Regional Botanic Gardens for their foresight to integrate this lasting memorial to our beloved Queen while also making an exceptional contribution to the conservation of this site.
This significant work by your many volunteers, with the assistance from some wonderful school children, to rejuvenate and replant this site, is to be celebrated.
I understand that this area was selected for this commemorative tree planting due to its cultural, historic and botanical significance.
The original two-hectares that were donated in 1969 by John and Essie Rosser have certainly evolved into a spectacular environmental park.
It is such a wonderful space for all your family-oriented activities and events.
This ecological investment in our future recognises the planting of species from five regional ecosystems, importantly including rare and endangered varieties.
I am pleased to be personally planting a Kauri Pine, a tall slender tree that dates back to the Jurassic Age.
It is fitting that this enduring symbol is part of The Queen’s Green Canopy and will contribute her living legacy.
It will join more than a million trees planted in her name across the nation to date.
I am delighted, to now officially declare the Queen Elizabeth II Jubilee Avenue and Woodland Walk officially open, and to plant the Kauri Pine in her honour.
Congratulations to all involved and may you enjoy this wonderful new addition to your stunning natural environment for generations to come.