Share our shores campaign

Maddie Glynn1 & Gary McPike2

1Manager Community Liaison & Education, Barwon Coast

2General Manager, Barwon Coast



The Barwon coastline is within close proximity to local residential development and Melbourne.  With an increasing population wanting to come to the coast from resident populations and visitors, there is an increase in conflict of uses along our shores.  The coastline is public open space and should be equitable use by all.  The Share Our Shores campaign has commenced targeting the contentious issue of dogs on beaches. Conflict is occurring between dogs and other beach users, and at times this conflict is so significant it involves dog attacks.  Barwon Coast has experienced significant impacts to wildlife along our coastline that has led to serious injuries or death, and has seen an increase in risks to humans created by dogs, with some locals admitting they no longer visit the beach due to fear of an attack.

Barwon Coast, in partnership with other organisations including the Department of Environment Land Water and Planning, Parks Victoria, Victoria Police, local veterinarians, Australian Veterinary Association and the City of Greater Geelong,  launched this campaign to bring the community together.  ShareOurShores promotes the respect, responsibilities and rights that are important in minimising conflict between different beach users and dogs. Community forums were held where a panel of experts discuss the pros and cons involved in dogs on beaches and provide information on the current dog controls that are in place.  .  Over summer, Barwon Coast engaged Federation University to develop and conduct a social research project on the impacts of population and dogs along the Barwon coast.  The Share Our Shores campaign continues to grow with upcoming free community workshops on understanding your dogs body language; a tool that will strengthen responsible pet ownership.  Later in the year community workshops will allow participants to collaboratively work towards developing potential amendments to the existing dog control orders.

The Share Our Shores campaign will go broader than dogs, and is now looking at an in school education program to address the increase of youth partying in the dunes and responsible boating along the Barwon River estuary.


Maddie Glynn is the Manager of Community Liaison and Education with Barwon Coast and comes with nearly 40 years of environmental experience.

Whilst working with the then Victorian National Parks Service, her wildlife passion was strengthened whilst rehabilitating wildlife. Moving across to Fisheries Victoria in an educative role at a National and State level highlighted the need for an holistic approach to catchment management, which saw her move into a coastal planning role with the then Department of Sustainability and Environment.

In her current role with Barwon Coast, Maddie continues to strengthen working relationships with all agencies, organisations and individuals accessing the coast.  It is through this passion and drive, and working in a holistic manner that generates creative ways to reconnect people to the important values of the coast.

Gary McPike is General Manager of Barwon Coast, having occupied the position since April 2015, following 12.5 years at Otway Coast Committee as Executive Officer and previously General Manager of the Apollo Bay-Kennett River Public Reserves Committee of Management.

During the last 15+ years Gary has developed a strong understanding of all aspects of coastal Crown land management and the business and management model that operates in Victoria. He has been involved in all aspects of policy and strategic planning as well as being hands on with project managing capital works and natural resource management.

Previously he was self-employed for 22 years in the timber industry, hospitality, and major event management following a tertiary education in urban & planning studies.


Celebrating The Big Punchbowl – An Art and Nature Collaboration

Ms Margie Jenkin1

1Tasmanian Land Conservancy, Lower Sandy Bay, Australia


Connecting people with the environment is critical to progress nature conservation and the work of the Tasmanian Land Conservancy (TLC). Discovery days on our private reserves provide opportunities for supporters to hear about ecological values and management from expert staff. Our volunteer program engages students, supporters and neighbours in various activities, both on and off the reserves, while regular newsletters and social media share news and stories on the nature we protect.

But the visual arts and creative expression provide a fresh and artistic lens through which audiences can experience nature.

In 2016, in collaboration with Bett Gallery, the TLC introduced nine poets and nine painters to The Big Punchbowl Reserve on Tasmania’s Freycinet Peninsula.  In pairs, they have produced work interpreting the landscape, its stories and ecological fabric, and this has been exhibited and published in Poets and Painters – Celebrating The Big Punchbowl.

Gallery owners, Dick and Carol Bett hatched the Poets and Painters idea in the 1990s, bringing together writers and painters to collaborate in pairs. Their aim was to unite emerging and acclaimed artists of different genres, expose them to the same subject and then observe the response.

For the first time, the subject was replaced with a place, little known to the participants involved.

The results, edited and curated by Carol Bett and Pete Hay have been both intimate and grand, inviting us to ponder the role art can play in connecting new audiences to nature and its protection.


Margie Jenkin works with the Tasmanian Land Conservancy as a Strategic Projects Officer. This includes an eclectic mix of assignments that support the TLC’s mission for Tasmania to be a global leader in nature conservation, from the coordination of arts initiatives to the delivery of conferences, and various projects in between!  She has previously worked as Executive Officer with Landcare Tasmania and as a Fundraiser with the Environmental Defenders Office (EDO) Tasmania.

Margie has worked beside and with community care groups in various roles, including as a Ranger for the Tasmanian Parks and Wildlife Service and Project Manager with Volunteering Tasmania. She is a graduate of the Tasmanian Leaders Program and the Australian Institute of Company Directors. Margie holds a Bachelor Degree in Natural Environment and Wilderness Studies (Honours) from the University of Tasmania and a Diploma of Business Management (Tourism).  Margie grew up on a farm in South Australia but has called Tasmania home for over 25 years.  She lives on the side of Mount Wellington near Hobart and enjoys surfing, mountain biking, gardening, good food, friends and family.

Summerama – Connecting People with the Coast

Miss Belinda Atkins1, Mr Geoff Withycombe1

1Sydney Coastal Councils Group, Sydney, Australia


Summerama is a regional coastal activities program designed to enhance community awareness, and develop a sense of place by increasing the community’s interaction and connection with Sydney’s coastline through fun and inspiring coastal activities. Summerama is a partnership between Sydney Coastal Councils Group (SCCG) and its Member Councils, and is a proven and tested program that attracts over 2000 attendees during the month of January, through a range of activities from Pittwater to Sutherland. Members of the community are invited to actively participate in coastal activities, including kayaking, snorkeling, wetland and rock pool rambles, walk ‘n’ talks, coastal expos, citizen science, children’s waste to art activities, chalk art, and speaker events on marine life, coastal habitats, waste/plastics, science of the surf and coastal safety. The majority of coastal activities are offered free of charge to enhance participation and engagement, enabling equitable access to coastal activities by all members of the community. The program engages with other partners including state government, NGO’s, and volunteer groups. For the first time in 2017, SCCG planned activities with program partners to target culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) communities, bringing together a diverse group of people to spend time in and connect with the coastal space. It is recognised that greater understanding of the coast through participation in activities within this environment will lead to a greater appreciation of the coast, stewardship of coastal places, and further engagement of the community in implementing behaviours and community-based actions to address coastal issues and identify management solutions.


Belinda has a BAppSc (Environmental Management and Tourism), and a BAppSc (Honours) in protected areas management, and has worked in the environmental

field for 15 years; with experience in environmental management, environmental policy and strategy, environmental health, and the development and delivery of sustainability education and waste programs. Belinda is currently the Manager Projects and Programs at the Sydney Coastal Councils Group, where her primary role is assisting member councils to achieve sustainable coastal management through collaboration, capacity building, research and advocacy.

The Power of Story – Albatross Island

Mr Matthew Newton1

1Rummin Productions, Hobart, Australia


The power of story – Albatross Island

Community engagement and support is often a critical element of effective conservation of threatened species or communities. For the endemic Tasmanian shy albatross, which spends most of its life at sea, returning only to breed on one of three inaccessible offshore islands, this is a significant problem.

How do you get the public to care about a species they know little about and are unlikely ever to encounter?

This presentation demonstrates the value of conservationists partnering with professional content producers to enhance the conservation gains and education and outreach goals. It describes a collaboration between a wildlife biologist and a professional photographer. By partnering together, we aimed to raise the profile of the shy albatross by telling compelling stories about their life-history, the threats to their survival and the biologists dedicated to understanding and conserving them.

It will describe how this initiative has used artistic interpretation of the scientific data, immersive technologies, such as virtual reality, and traditional emotive cinematic story-telling and photography, to engage new audiences and build empathy for an otherwise overlooked species. It will also demonstrate the value of editorial content to conservation organisations and why it is more important then ever to tell their stories


Photographer and Principal Director at Rummin Productions.

Rummin are a Tasmanian based film and digital media production company specialising in cinematic documentary, narrative video and digital media projects. Rummin believe storytelling is the most powerful way to put ideas into the world today. Stories are what move us, make us feel alive, and inspire us. We collaborate with NGO’s, Government and ethical businesses to create work that spans television, theatrical, online learning and site-specific installations. We strive to find powerful and transformative true-to-life stories and bring them to life with a balance of imagination, innovation and authenticity.

Matthew’s photographic work is regularly chosen amongst the countries best and exhibited in the nations premier photographic art prizes. He has been a finalist in the National Portrait Prize and the Moran Prize for Contemporary Photography a number of occasions. He regularly photographs for editorial and news publications throughout Australia.

Redefining community based on place attachment in a connected world

Dr Georgina Gurney1

1ARC Centre Of Excellence For Coral Reef Studies, James Cook University, Townsville, Australia


The concept of community is often used in environmental policy to foster environmental stewardship and public participation, crucial prerequisites of effective management. However, prevailing conceptualizations of community based on residential location or resource use are limited with respect to their utility as surrogates for communities of shared environment-related interests, and because of the localist perspective they entail. Thus, addressing contemporary sustainability challenges, which tend to involve transnational social and environmental interactions, urgently requires additional approaches to conceptualizing community that are compatible with current globalization. We propose a framing for redefining community based on place attachment (i.e., the bonds people form with places) in the context of Australia’s Great Barrier Reef, a World Heritage Area threatened by drivers requiring management and political action at scales beyond the local. Using data on place attachment from 5,403 respondents residing locally, nationally, and internationally, we identified four communities that each shared a type of attachment to the reef and that spanned conventional location and use communities. We suggest that as human–environment interactions change with increasing mobility (both corporeal and that mediated by communication and information technology), new types of people–place relations that transcend geographic and social boundaries and do not require ongoing direct experience to form are emerging. We propose that adopting a place attachment framing to community provides a means to capture the neglected nonmaterial bonds people form with the environment, and could be leveraged to foster transnational environmental stewardship, critical to advancing global sustainability in our increasingly connected world.


Georgina is an Environmental Social Science Research Fellow at the ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies, James Cook University. Her research focuses broadly on understanding the socioeconomic conditions that influence opportunities for collaborative management of marine common-pool natural resources, and the multiple socioeconomic and environmental outcomes of such initiatives. Georgina takes a transdisciplinary approach to her research, drawing on theories and methods from a range of disciplines including political science, social psychology, and human geography. She has undertaken most of her research in the context of coral reef management in the Asia-Pacific region, where she is working closely with resource managers.

Picturing coastal issues

Dr Garry Middle1

1Curtin University, Bentley, Australia


A picture is worth a thousand words, and there are a thousand coastal stories out there. This session is all about photo stories of coastal issues. How this session will work? First, photographers are invited to choose one of their photos that tells a coastal story and have it shown in this session. Second, the session is open to anyone – photographers and non-photographers – to attend and view and discuss the photos. The room will be darkened and each photo will be shown on a screen one at a time. Participants will be given time to reflect, react and then comment on each photo in turn. The photographer can choose to then, in 2 minutes, respond to the comments and tell us what was intended. The session will conclude with a general discussion of the power of photography and to do next – for example, should we publish the photos as a book, or turn them into a photography exhibition.


Dr Garry Middle is an adjunct senior research fellow at Curtin University, and an independent member of the board of the Western Australian Planning Commission as an expert in coastal and environmental planning.

Our connection to the coast and sea – how do we describe, understand and consider this special connection in coastal planning and management

Ms Liz Patterson1

1 Vic Dept Environment, Land, Water & Planning , East Melbourne, Australia


At Coast to Coast 2004 Hobart, I ran an open space session titled, ‘Spirituality – what is at the bottom of us caring for the coast’, this was an energetic discussion about the coast as a place of renewal, people feeling emotionally connected to the coast, and how the coast and ocean is linked to our well-being. As a coastal manager over the last 20 years I have also observed people’s strong connection to the coast and the important role this plays in rest, inspiration, and connection to nature.

In Australia (apart from Aboriginal culture) there is a gap in being able to describe or articulate this emotional connection, as well as a lack of tools in our planning and management systems for this connection to be considered in decision making. This can lead to poorly informed decisions that do not reflect all the costs and benefits to the community and our environment.

Having a better understanding of why, how and where people are connected to landscapes could help us improve our planning and management decisions and the way we look after the land and sea.

This presentation will be a stimulating interactive session with participants testing a method for identifying and describing their connection to a special place. This will help to build a method that can be used with communities to describe their connections and used in coastal and marine planning and management.


Liz is the Manager of the Policy & Strategy Unit, at the Victorian Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning. Liz has worked in the field of coastal management and planning in both the public and private sector for the last 20 years. Her roles have included a range of policy development, coastal planning and stakeholder engagement. Liz’s love and interest of the coast comes from growing up in the small seaside town of Ocean Grove, Victoria. When not at work Liz gets to share her love of the beach with her energetic toddler Banjo.

About the Association

The Australian Coastal Society (ACS) was initiated at the Coast to Coast Conference in Tasmania in 2004. The idea was floated as a means for those interested in coastal matters to communicate between conferences and where possible take resolutions of the conference to appropriate levels of government.

The idea was discussed further at the Coast to Coast Conference in Melbourne in 2006 and it was agreed that Bruce Thom develop a constitution of a company limited by guarantee that would operate on a national basis.

This plan was accomplished and in 2008 at the Coast to Coast Conference in Darwin the constitution was ratified and an Executive appointed. The company received charitable status in 2011.

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