Leura Gardens Charter

The public gardens in Leura village centre are a tourist destination for visitors and a place of pride and joy for residents. They are the backdrop for many events such as the annual Leura Village Fair in Spring, and Christmas in the Mall both hosted by the Leura Village Association (LVA).

The LVA has been actively involved in creating and maintaining the public gardens since its inaugural Leura Village Fair in 1981 which funded the cherry trees in the Mall median strip. In recognition of this important and ongoing work, the LVA has prepared a Charter to explain and guide its public gardening activities.

The Charter sets out the LVA's horticultural vision for the Gardens, as well as how they are maintained, developed and protected.

Horticultural Objectives

The guiding principles of the streetscaping and its maintenance include:

  • Creating four seasons of colour, texture, abundance and beauty, 
  • Planting diverse combinations of material that showcase popular cool climate trees and plants of historic Leura gardens as well as new cultivars from top breeders,
  • Incorporating native flora and cultivars, encompassing those that are local to the area,
  • Educating by plantings that are appropriate to the conditions of light, temperature, water, soil and wind in their specific location,
  • Removing noxious or invasive weed species,
  • Implementing best practice regular maintenance including seasonal timeliness in pruning, feeding and weeding to ensure the health and high performance of plants.
  • Integrating the maintenance and design to support the various festivals and other activities promoted by the LVA in the village precinct.
  • Maintaining the integrity of the space to optimise the horticultural experience,
  • Creating an ambience that encourages residents and visitors to use the Mall as a place of relaxation and enjoyment, and be reflective of Leura village life.

The Role of the LVA

Since 1981 the LVA is proud to have taken the lead in the funding, creation and maintenance of the public Gardens, in partnership with the Blue Mountains City Council (BMCC), creating many milestones on the way. This contribution is widely acknowledged and continues unabated by:

  • Contracting the services of an horticulturalist,
  • Facilitating a volunteer workforce of local gardeners,
  • Working in partnership with the BMCC,
  • Providing funding for plants and other materials, and the services of the contracted horticulturalist, from its own financial resources.

Milestones

During the LVA's stewardship, many milestones have been created as the shape of the public gardens has been transformed. Some of these are:

  • In 1981, establishing the annual Leura Fair to complement the Leura Garden Festival and using the proceeds to fund garden improvements, maintenance in the Mall, the promotion of Leura Village and the members of the LVA,
  • In 1982, the planting of the cherry trees down the median strip was funded by the first Leura Fair,
  • Relocating sandstone kerb blocks for the edging of the gardens,
  • Overseeing and providing 50% of funding for the street paving and hard landscaping to establish garden beds down the Mall, and installing garden taps at key points,
  • in 1988, creating and funding the Leura garden village mural bed in the walkway to the car park, as a bicentenary project in partnership with the Fairmont Resort and NSW State Government,
  • Contracting successive landscapers and horticulturalists to plant out and regularly maintain the gardens,
  • Recruiting local residents as volunteers to assist the horticulturalist,
  • In 2019, with the appointment of a new horticulturalist and the recruiting of a new volunteer workforce of some twelve people, a revised strategy was developed. Extensive maintenance, re-landscaping and diversity of plantings were undertaken.
  • In 2022, a Charter was developed based on the implemented strategy to document the aims and objectives with the public gardens and to formalise the LVA's role.
  • In 2022, an area was identified on public lands as a composting space. Over a period of 2 months the area known as Compost Corner was cleared of invasive weeds, levelled and compost bins installed to support the sustainability goals of the LVA