Wooden plant stands were a popular tourist attraction in the Victorian era.
They were also used as hideouts for prostitutes and were considered the best places to sleep after dark.
Now they are known as ‘the Belleaus’, and are one of the best known Victorian tourist attractions.
But the wood-covered stand at Hueston Woods has been under siege by poachers for years.
Now, the park’s owner is looking to close the attraction for good.
Tara O’Neil reports.
The site is located in Hueston, a remote part of South Australia’s Northern Territory.
Wooden plant stood (top left) and its surrounding area (bottom right).
For a while the Belleaux was the best spot in town to have a smoke and relax.
It was one of many locations to relax and enjoy the sights, sounds and smells of the town.
But the poachers have been persistent, stealing the stand and leaving behind piles of the wood.
In 2015, the Victorian Government put a stop to the poaching, but the park was closed for the rest of the year.
Now, the property owners say they will close the property in October and will try to find a new home for the wood, which they are hoping will attract tourists to Hueston.
“We’ve got a good property in Huenburg, we’ve got great timber here, we have good water,” Ms O’Neill said.
“But we have to be careful that people don’t come here, they don’t want to come to Huenburg and be robbed.”
Hueston Woods owner Tara O’Donnell says she is looking at closing the property for good in October.
Source: ABC News.
Ms O’Near said she hoped to get the stand back in operation in time for Christmas, which is when the timber will be harvested.
She said the timber was valuable and would help the local community with tourism.
“It is a wonderful place to sit down and relax and eat some good food and enjoy yourself in the bush, but we have got to take care of the animals as well, we don’t have a lot of them,” she said.
Huessen Woods owner Laura O’Neal says she has put in place a plan to reopen the property.
Source (ABC News: Liza Smith)Ms O-Neal said she is hopeful a new owner will be found to take over the property and provide the locals with a better environment for wildlife and for the animals.
Tourism Minister Simon Corbell said Hueston had a long history of tourism and he was proud of its achievements.
He said Huessen Woods was a great example of how to promote tourism.
Mr Corbell added that the local government and the tourism industry were working together to help restore the heritage value.
“Hueston was one site that really stood out from other places, and it has had an incredible heritage and was a wonderful location for people to enjoy their lives and spend time in,” he said.
“But in recent years, we think that’s happened, and we’re hoping to continue to see more heritage heritage sites in the area and bring that heritage back to Huessen.”
Tourists and locals gather at the Bellegar Wood at Huestown, south of Hobart.
Source : ABC News (ABC Digital News)Hueston Wildlife Management Authority chief executive Shane Gartrell said the owners had been working closely with the park authorities, the Department of Agriculture and Forestry, and the Victorian Parks and Wildlife Service (VWPWS) to get to the point where the BelLegar Wood could be reopened.
“They’ve put in a lot into that, they’ve put a lot behind that,” he told ABC News Breakfast.
“We’re happy to continue working with them to bring the BelLEAU Wood back, hopefully in October.”
“It’s been quite an ordeal, but it’s something we’ll do with a lot more determination and a lot less anger, as it relates to the situation.”
Topics:wildlife,wildlife-management,habitat,gardens,tas,harbour-4305,hobart-7000,hastings-7010,newcastle-2300,southport-4215,hilton-7250Contact Liza McGlincheyMore stories from South Australia