Golden Bay residents save award-winning rose garden

After a long uphill battle with the Rockingham City Council, a Golden Bay family is “ecstatic” after winning an appeal to save their award-winning rose garden.

Last year, the home of 93-year-old Trevor Coster was one of those issued an official notice to remove the rose bushes from his beloved front garden.

The City of Rockingham demanded that the rose bushes be removed after being ruled a public safety hazard following a complaint from a member of the public.

The rose verges along Karunjie Road and Yanrey Street were planted by Mr Coster almost a decade ago and even won an award for best large garden in Golden Bay.

Camera IconMore than 400 locals signed the onsite petition. Credit: Facebook

Shortly after the City’s notice, the Coster family set up a petition at the rose verge site, obtaining more than 400 signatures, and an online petition received 1500 signatures.

The local Golden Bay Progress Association also took up the campaign, gathering huge support from the community via Facebook.

Mr Coster’s daughters Dayl Muir and Lisa Dopheide worked tirelessly to appeal the City’s decision, which proved to be worthwhile following last month’s letter from the WA Ombudsman.

In the letter addressed to Ms Muir, the Ombudsman recommended the City “not pursue the enforcement of the Notice or take any further enforcement action with respect to the roses”.

Camera IconTrevor Coster, 92, at his Golden Bay house with the ‘offending’ roses in the front garden. The council want the roses removed because of the thorns. Credit: Jackson Flindell/The West Australian

Mr Coster said he was “ecstatic and relieved with the result”.

“I am relieved that we do not have to dig them out and transplant them somewhere where they are not enjoyed by everyone. The whole neighbourhood can celebrate,” he said.

Ms Dopheide said although relieved with the outcome, there had been times when the process was very “grueling” and “demoralising” when battling the council.

“We almost gave up a number of times, but we were determined to fight for what was right,” she said.

“We had to exhaust every avenue before the Ombudsman would take on the issue.”

The Coster family first contacted the Ombudsman in July 2022 before they finally took on the case in August 2022.

“Our father was very disturbed and upset at first,” Ms Dopheide said.

“He actually couldn’t believe after the roses had been there for about 12 years, they would have to be removed.

“He is very proud to be a part of this process to fight the decision and hopes this will encourage others that commonsense does prevail.”

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