Willow Grove green ban defended

Defending Willow Grove on June 22. Photo: Rachel Evans

More than 150 workers, students and residents picketed entrances to Parramatta’s historic Willow Grove on June 22.

Supporters started arriving on site by 5am. They had been alerted to work on the site the previous afternoon, which breached a Construction, Forestry, Mining and Energy Union (CFMEU) Green Ban and a ministerial undertaking that work would not begin to the NSW Land and Environment Court’s June 16 decision was lodged.

The NSW government wants to move the historic building to make way for the new Powerhouse Museum.

As the entrances were picketed, the North Parramatta Residents Action Group (NPRAG) lodged the appeal in the NSW Supreme Court and requested an urgent injunction to stop work at the site. By 4pm, the injunction was granted. However the NSW government is seeking to allow works to continue on “non-heritage” parts of the site.

The Save Willow Grove appeal hearing is scheduled for July 2.

Meanwhile, supporters are staying vigilant and gearing up for more protest action. NPRAG spokesperson Suzette Meade said: “The community, with the support of the unions behind us, will fight this until we save Willow Grove.”

Willow Grove. June 22. Photo: Susan Price