MRS Bertha York would have been proud.
Work has commenced this week to restore the waterfall in the Port Macquarie gardens that were a labour of love for Mrs York who, among her final wishes before she died, hoped the feature including a windmill would take pride of place on the hill overlooking the Hastings River entrance.
Friends of Mrs York's Garden spokesperson Dianne Davison said it was an exciting milestone in the rehabilitation of the original garden which was dedicated on December 6, 1968.
The waterfall was completed in 1970.
Mrs York passed away in March 1971, leaving the care of her cherished gardens to council.
The waterfall and windmill are the only two original remnants remaining of the original garden. In 1976, the windmill was removed much to the dismay of residents and swiftly restored. Almost a quarter of a century later in 2000, the windmill was uncovered in a clean up at the gardens and removed with the concrete reservoir filled in.
"We have tracked down that windmill and will be using the blades as a sculptural element in the restoration with a solar panel to be used for power," Mrs Davison explained.
"It was a vision from day one to once again have running water, one which has taken five determined years to come to fruition."
The $50,000 project has been supported by Friends of Mrs York's Garden community fundraising as well as the dedicated commitment of residents Bob and Evelyne Lynch.
"Our plan was to again hold a public appeal for funds, knowing that the community would be keen to see water running there again," Mrs Davison said. "However with the difficult times of bushfires and the COVID virus it hasn't seemed appropriate."
The project will be delivered in two stages - installing a functioning waterfall; followed by a walking bridge, seat, signage and additional landscaping.
Friends of Mrs York's Garden will offer the five large feature rocks to be installed for community sponsorship by individuals, family groups or businesses.
The two larger, more attractive rocks can be sponsored for $1500 each and the three others for $1000 each.
Sponsorship or donations of any amount will be acknowledged. Call on Di 0439 853 835, private message the Friends of Mrs York's Garden Facebook page or direct deposit to BSB 932000, account 500184502 (reference: Name W/fall).
The boardwalk and walking path to Allman Hill will be closed for 2 to 3 weeks for completion of the works by BNJ Landscaping.