Bob Spiller

Member of Gunning District Landcare

Bob Spiller’s volunteering with Landcare began nearly twenty years ago when he became a member of the Jerrawa Creek Landcare Group after moving out from Canberra, and he took Executive roles with that group from 2001. However, by 2016, the Jerrawa Creek Landcare members were aging, and most of their projects had been completed; it became apparent that the group was slowing down. At the same time, a new group had formed in the Blakney Creek and Bialla area and struggling to make progress. Bob saw the value of combining the groups as they covered most of Gunning Shire, and would be financially strengthened enough to employ a local Landcare Co-ordinator. Developing the two groups into Gunning District Landcare group has also attracted new members.

The process of amalgamation seemed simple at first with a meeting involving both groups to formally agree, followed up by a Special General Meeting where the name change was agreed to. Having completed much paper work, the next step was applying for a Community Industry & Landscape Fund Grant (CILF) through the National Landcare Program. Issues that Bob had to sort out included establishing a partnership with the community and building community support, negotiation with Council to obtain premises at Gunning, and setting up a payment system for the Co-ordinator’s wages. The support of the South East Local Land Services was crucial and much appreciated.

Bob has also planned and executed many successful Landcare events and field days. Recently Gunning District Landcare held the “Truth About Trees” field day with Keynote speaker, Professor David Lindenmayer, which attracted over 130 participants.

Bob was also heavily involved in Tussock Tamers, project that continues today. This project recognised that a problem like Serrated Tussock needed a plan that suited the particular area and circumstances. It was understood that to achieve control of this invasive weed, it was necessary to have everybody working together and making a sustained effort. Many of these lessons have been carried forward to the Gunning and District Fox Fighting Program, of which Bob was an initiator.

Here is a short video about Bob