Chinese gardens’ volunteers plot more refurbishments
PLANNING is underway to create new entrances to Beechworth’s Chinese Gardens below Lake Sambell.
Kathryn Chivers is a member of a community group which devised and created the gardens from 1997 to recognise the contribution of colonial-era Chinese-born gold-miners, market gardeners and traders to Beechworth’s development.
Volunteers refurbished the dip below the lake wall, clearing weeds and rubbish as part of the planning phase.
“With the help of a feng shiu expert, who looked for elements beneath the soil, we chose three Chinese elements to feature in the gardens,” Ms Chivers said.
“Fire was represented by the rising of the phoenix, wood by trees and plants, and water by streams and ponds.
“Many community members spent an untold number of hours lending their expertise, plants and help.”
Ms Chivers said the gardens were disrupted in 2015-16 when the lake wall was rebuilt at a cost of $3 million.
“There was a disruption when the (old) wall developed a leak a few years ago and a new lake wall was built that took away a part of the garden,” she said.
“The pagoda had to be moved and reestablished in another part of the gardens.”
She said the volunteers were now working with the council to put in a children’s playground with seats to make it a special meeting place.
“A new-generation Buddha graces a raised area in the garden and children love to play on him and we encourage them to do so,” she said.
“We also have a lot more work to do to create new entrances to the gardens and that will mean moving the Foo Dogs to new access points.
“The changes will include disability access.”
FLEETING: Kathryn Chivers admires the stunning display of delicate cherry blossom by the footbridge in Beechworth’s Chinese Gardens.
NURSERY: A family of ducks enjoy a swim in the Chinese Gardens’ pond.