The Dibble Avenue waterhole is a very interesting but little-known part of the broader GreenWay corridor. A couple of recent issues before
Marrickville Council mean that the debate about how best to preserve this hidden gem will probably continue.
Tucked behind a small reserve in Marrickville West, just north of the Cooks River, the waterhole has a haven for waterbirds and ducks and has
recently been restored by Marrickville Council. It is described as the only remnant open (albeit water-filled) former brick pit remaining in the Marrickville local government area – all the others having mainly been filled for parks. It might be hard to find (via AB Croft Reserve) but it is a very scenic and pretty part of Marrickville and a worthy part of the GreenWay corridor.
The waterhole is locally heritage-listed as part of Marrickville’s local environmental plan. A few weeks ago, Marrickville Council decided to seek
public comment on a proposal to enlarge the heritage zone around the waterhole. This was largely on the basis that segments of the waterhole were, quite incredibly, actually part of private property and this had not been properly captured in the previous heritage boundaries. See the council report on this matter (very large document, search for Dibble). It’s pretty obvious that the waterhole is partly privately-owned from the fact that one resident has built a deck over the water! (see below)
It’s got to be said, however, it’s not clear why a surveyor when subdividing the main waterhole from adjacent proposed housing blocks would have allow some sections of the pit to remain in these blocks. It’s also not clear why Marrickville Council did not fill in this pit when it resumed it – like it did with pits that used to exist but have long been filled at places such as Jarvie and Henson Parks at Marrickville and Arlington Oval at Dulwich Hill.
The other issue is that an application has been lodged to build a small unit block, on a property immediately to the south of waterhole. The
heritage report for this proposal has some interesting history about the waterhole, including the financial woes which beset its owner. The application says it is in keeping with the heritage and ecological character of the waterhole. The fact that someone wants to build a new unit block overlooking the waterhole appears to prove that it does have some scenic value. The application is on exhibition until May 23.