The appearance of a natural environment winding through and alongside agriculture in the Lower Hunter Valley Wine Country, in today’s terms, sets The Valley apart and is a draw-card for visitors. Our tree-scape in particular is an asset and has allowed the area to retain some wildlife which visitors to the Valley, and locals enjoy.

So who is actively working to retain and repair our environment? Here are some:

  • Friends of Tumblebee

This vital community group have been valuable campaigners to protect forests around Cessnock and in particular Mt Tomalpin on several occasions which required court action. These forests are habitat to 2 of Australia’s most endangered birds – the Regents Honeyeater and the Swift Parrot.

Cessnock City Council has joined the Habitat Stepping Stones Program, coordinated through Macquarie University. By encouraging local residents to create a habitat steppingstone on their land, we can help our local wildlife in their movement through the area, find food, homes and water, and improve on our existing biodiversity corridors and habitat.

Landcare is a grassroots movement, supported by all levels of government and the private sector to combat soil erosion, pests & diseases, loss of habitat for local flora & fauna. Local people are working together to repair the bushland, creeks, wetlands eg the Hunter River Reserve.

The loss of habitat, road hazards, and debilitating sarcoptic mange have all contributed to their steady decline of the bare nosed wombat.  Over 30 years ago, Roz and Kev Holme recognized the plight of the wombats and their work was recently recognised by Australian Geographic which held a fund raiser to raise awareness and donations for a much needed wombat hospital that will be part of Cedar Creek Wombat Rescue Inc.

This rare plant has a National Recovery Strategy and a conservation area has been set up to protect the remaining naturally occurring plants and to propagate more to ensure its future.

This Reserve protects the Pokolbin Mallee – a vulnerable tree species on the ridge of the Brokenback Range, west of Pokolbin currently the only known population. This [inaccessible] reserve is now in a ‘site management program’ of Saving Our Species.

The Lock the Gate Alliance is a national grassroots organisation with 450 local groups who are concerned about risky coal mining, coal seam gas and fracking. A declaration was made: farmers would lock their gates to protect their private land. These groups are located in all parts of Australia and include farmers, traditional custodians, conservationists and urban residents.


Hunter Renewal is a project to bring people, businesses, and organisations of the Hunter Valley together to plan for a diverse, resilient, and thriving future, beyond dependence on coal mining. The aim is to promote new industries, protect traditional sustainable industries and to rehabilitate our landscapes to provide clean water and productive country for generations to come. This is a project of the Hunter Central Rivers Alliance of 40 community groups across the greater Hunter region. 

The Lower Hunter Regional Sustainability Planning and Strategic Assessment collaborative has similar objectives. The Lower Hunter is Australia’s sixth largest urban area and is expected to grow further into the future, but also has many significant environmental assets worth protecting.

A peaceful, Australia wide, protest group against environmental degradation and exploitation. They stage ‘knit-ins’ at protest sites and support other lobby groups in their action on environmental issues.