Back to Impact Stories

Lord Somers Camp and Power House

  • Project: Merricks Creek Weed Eradication and Bank Restoration Project
  • Amount: $25,000
  • Year(s) Funded: 2015

Maximising environmental impact through leverage, passion and partnerships

With a fragile ecosystem at risk due to erosion, land-use change and feral pests, this project leveraged the power of partnerships to rehabilitate the threatened aquatic and terrestrial coastal ecosystem at the mouth of the Merricks Creek in Somers on Victoria’s Western Port.

Volunteers from Lord Somers Camp and Power House and the Somers community planting over 1,000 indigenous plants to help stabilise the Merricks Creek bank.

“Active citizenship is the key ingredient for the sustainable management of complex ecosystems. When combined with strategic and innovative interventions from partners, government and technical specialists, impact will exceed expectations.” John Robert, LSC&PH Volunteer

A group of passionate volunteers and the local community have been empowered to take increased ownership in the sustainable management of this delicate coastal environment. Starting with a small group of volunteers from Lord Somers Camp and Power House, this project quickly built momentum by leveraging partnerships with Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning, Parks Victoria, Balnarring Foreshore Committee, Melbourne Water, Somers Community and Victoria University.


  • Establishment of the Merricks Creek and Estuary Working Group including representatives from: LSC&PH, Melbourne Water, Parks Victoria, Balnarring Foreshore Committee, DELWP, technical specialists and local Somers residents.
  • Extensive erosion control works undertaken including dune stabilisation works, installation of sand barrier fencing and erosion control matting, and improvements to pedestrian paths to reduce erosion.
  • Eradication and management of weed and feral pests.
  • A community planting day of over 1,000 local indigenous species had a 98% success rate six months after planting.
  • The establishment of environmental and community management and monitoring systems including the innovative Fluker Post Program, a citizen science system  which uses mobile phones in a community-based environmental monitoring scheme for creek and beach erosion.
  • Design and installation of environmental and coastal management signage and the development of materials for an environmental interpretations walk for school children.
  • The Merricks Creek and Estuary Working Group is developing long term solutions focusing on estuary health and is planning to collaborate with the Western Port Biosphere Project, also supported by the HMSTrust.