Tennyson Dunes

Coast Park Still Threatens Tennyson Dunes

Despite a legal win by other coastal groups that will at least delay the Coast Park through the dunes in front of houses, the Tennyson Dunes Conservation Reserve itself is still at immediate risk of an environmentally destructive bike track.

We believe that the coast belongs to everyone to enjoy, but with that comes a responsibility to preserve these places for future generations. The Tennyson Dunes Group, are volunteers who have devoted over 1000 hours each year since 1995. We protect the dunes through revegetation, weeding and community education such as school tours and our annual Open Days where some of the state's best scientists give their time freely.

State Government are adamant that a bike track straight through the dunes will happen. Therefore, we decided to work collaboratively with them to ensure this path had minimal ecological impact.

We have had some positive outcomes such as the dedication of the dunes as a Conservation Reserve, and made countless walks through the dunes with Ministers, who made specific promises for a minimal impact "Discovery Trail".

We both agreed to a genuine Discovery Trail that sticks to the existing path's footprint, minimises damage to native vegetation and fauna, has a permeable surface, permits slow safe cycling and encourages people to enjoy the dunes, not race through them.

We thought these were genuine promises, but last week the tender for the path's construction was advertised without our prior knowledge. We were shocked and heartbroken by it. There were new things not consulted on and many of our previous objections had been ignored.

We are still upset by the width of the path, extent of vegetation damage, construction materials and the rush to get this done by the end of the year. It is the worst time for wildlife. Considering the fate of the path on either side of the Reserve is still unknown, this could be a bike track to nowhere.

Consequently, we are meeting with Ministers Hunter and Mullighan on Wednesday 24th October to hopefully persuade them to change their designs. Unfortunately, however, they have refused to rule out awarding the tender before our meeting, which means construction could still begin any time now.

We will update our supporters after our meeting with the Minister, but if you love the dunes, its flowers, wildlife and natural state, be prepared to lend your voices to protect one of the most significant dune systems along any Australian metropolitan coastline.

2017 Tennyson Dunes Open Day Sunday

Despite a bad weather forecast, our 2017 Open Day was a great event, with over 150 people attending for the expert guided tours, coastal kids activities, market fair and, as it turns out, some good weather. The day also commemorated the Tennyson Dune Group's 22nd birthday.

We thank our expert tour guides for volunteering their time - Victor Gostin, Peter Matejcic, Neville Bonney, Tim Milne, Murray Townsend, Catherine McMahon and the Marine Discovery Centre. Special thanks also to the West Lakes Kiwanis, Animals Anonymous, Friends of Torrens Island, Adelaide Dolphin Sanctuary Action Group, the City of Charles Sturt and Natural Resources Adelaide and Mt Lofty Ranges for their kind support.

Location Map

21st Anniversary Celebrations

Last year, the Tennyson Dunes Group celebrated 21 years of volunteering to protect the Dunes.

In this time, we have:

  • eradicated several weed species, including African Boxthorn and Marguerite Daisy
  • restored wildlife habitat for animals like the Bitterbush Blue Butterfly
  • held numerous Open Days, the last few each boasting a crowd of over 300 people
  • assisted school groups to revegetate the dunes, and
  • encouraged better protection for this fragile ecosystem, including the recent dedication of the Tennyson Dunes Conservation Reserve

Tennyson Dunes

The Tennyson Dunes are 22 hectares of coastal dunes with natural grass and shrub land being the last true remnant of the Adelaide metropolitan coastal plains. It is a coastal conservation reserve 12 kilometres north-west of the city near the locally historic Estcourt House. It displays a large diversity of flora with the presence of rare and regionally significant plants, bird life, reptiles and invertebrates, making it a truly unique area as an island in an urban area.

The dune's resilience is being tested with many competing factors and the Tennyson Dunes Group, a dedicated volunteer conservation group, has a prime objective to provide a safe sanctuary for all the flora and fauna and improve and share this valuable asset with the community.

This website has been produced by the Group to assist in raising the importance of the dunes for its natural values, as well as its heritage and educational significance.

Uncover more about the dunes with our Fast Facts.

Want to learn more? Read the Weekend Notes article by Dave Walsh.


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Location Map