Archive:   Community Lament

Last Updated  5/4/11



A Sign Of The Depressing Times And Places We Live In

(2/4/09 - CC)  What happened to the Melbourne we knew and loved? 

Below is a letter written by an older Victorian after visiting Melbourne recently, expressing the writer's despair at what Melbourne is becoming. 


We left (home) at 8.30 am on a sunny day, glancing at what's left of old growth forests from the windows of the express bus taking us to Southern Cross Station.  As we approached the Western end of the city, emerging from the tunnel, it is all I could do not to vomit.


I recall in the 1950's on my way to work admiring the old buildings which once graced this part of Melbourne. An old red brick tea factory is now the only thing of beauty amongst the cranes, cement and glass boxes crowding the skyline.


We “trammed” it to Docklands... Designed by?  I can only surmise the inventors of the ‘Berlin Wall’ and Australian refugee camps. 


Devoid of grass, trees or exercise areas for our 3 healthy young grandchildren.  Staying in a sterile brown, fawn and grey 300 unit building, from the child unfriendly balcony we glimpsed the Bay.  Disappointed that there was no suitable place for sipping good coffee, late breakfast or children’s play, we trammed it to the Botanical Gardens. 


I began to think about how lucky we were at home, where it is still possible to see real scenery, and take walks among indigenous stands of trees where birds of all kinds are free to fly or nest.



Lament Of A Successful Victorian Community Campaigner

(14/4/08 - CC)  Echoes of a subtle oppression too many of us can relate to. See the Lament


Dealing With A State Government That Doesn't Seem To Understand Or Care

(24/2/08 - SG)  A community activist's response to the Upper House Public Land Inquiry's report, and other observations

MRRA received the following frank reaction to the Inquiry's latest report (see earlier story) and felt that the pain, frustration, dismay and anguish these words represent are worthy of sharing.  You may also wish to follow up on the additional information that now seems to be available by clicking the link below.

I have just skim read the report...


The letter [from the Inquiry] states that "Further information regarding the Committee including activities in 2008 is available on the Committee's website"


I was concerned about the tenor of the report - but at the same time amazed to read some frank and honest opinions.  I feel depressed for some wanting to achieve the best and right outcomes for the environment of our coast in particular.


Many members of our community speak in casual conversation about the lack of beauty in the entrance to Melbourne particularly from the south eastern suburbs when entering Spencer Street (old name) Station via the bus route.  The replacement of the skyline with ever towering cement and glass and the loss of heritage buildings is enough to make us country people vomit. 


I have some understanding of the dismay at the loss of what remains of public spaces (however defined) when you watch the ever increasing expansion of new hospitals and the demolition of what once made Melbourne a beautiful garden city.


The damage from the dredging of the Bay is something that will never be reversed - how much easier it would be to reverse the decisions?!  There is something not quite right in the "state of the State". 


The lack of availability of public servants to give opinions mentioned in this recent report is mirrored in my two sets of Yes Minister and Prime Minister.


There is very little pride and no humour in this report.  These are the two things that usually keep me fighting.  How about You?