I thought I would email you to say what a great job you have done through the bush fire crisis.
I heard you out there supporting the community, being available and so thoughtfully and strongly leading and helping and also putting up with some crap but you really have come across in the media as a caring hardworking Mayor.
Sometimes when you are close to the issues and listening to all those repugnant councillors you have to deal with and their anti environmental stances and jealousies its difficult to get a perspective on how effective you have been.
So I would like to say congratulations to you and all you wonderful Green Councillors.
I know that the pro tree clearing councillors are in part responding in the only way they can and are closed to the idea of planting trees to save properties rather than cutting them down.
I would like to recount an event in my childhood in 1956, when I watched the great Blue Mountains fire take out much of the Leura township.
I was ten at the time and was watching the fire come up the valley when to my horror the firetrucks retreated and left a group of houses to the mercy of the fire.
A few days later I returned to see what had happened to them and all had perished except one property. This place had a densely planted screen of poplars facing the fire storm and they absorbed the heat and saved the house.
The houses that were out in the open were engulfed by the enormous reach of the fire. I learned then how fire reaches over open spaces in extreme fire events regardless of the proximity of native fire promoting vegetation and how fire retarding trees can protect against fire.
I also understand that many people in Victoria, post the Black Saturday fires, are now creating physical or vegetation fire screens composed of fire suppressant or resistant vegetation.
As you would be aware many of our native rainforest vegetation is regarded as fire resistant or suppressive so these can be useful plants to promote in fire prone areas.
So I have attached a Blue Mountains City Council pamphlet informing residents of appropriate trees to plant in fire prone areas which might be useful in dealing with the aftermath response to the fires.
Letter by HH Jones